The Most Business Friendly Cities for New Start Ups in the East North Central Area

East North Central Business Friendly CitiesThe east north-central parts of the United States are finding themselves at the epicenter of a business renaissance at the beginning of the 21st century. As more people migrate to these areas, they bring their businesses and their ideas along with them. This has helped to create a very business-friendly atmosphere throughout the area that can be felt by everyone. Though there are many cities in this area that could be considered business friendly, there are a few that stand out among the rest. Cities like Chicago, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Columbus and Cleveland stand as a testament to how business-friendly this area is.


It could be argued that Chicago is the most business-friendly city in the east north-central area of the United States. In truth, many would argue that it's the most business-friendly city in the country. The city is home to an enormous range of business development centers including the Women's Business Development Center and the Business Development Center at CSU Illinois. Chicago is home to the second largest financial district in the United States and it is home to the Chicago Stock Exchange. Legislation enacted at the state level has provided a number of tax incentives to small businesses in the city. The business community is so strong here that Chicago is one of few major cities in the US that sees a net retention of graduates from business colleges in the city. Want to set up in Chicago? View office space options here.


Indianapolis is the county seat of Marion County and it is home to a wide range of assets for business owners. While there are many things that make Indianapolis great for all types of business owners, the city is especially well-suited to manufacturing companies. There are many programs in the city that are designed to help small businesses grow and new businesses form. The state of Illinois actually has an entire department of government whose sole purpose is to help develop small businesses around the state. Major publications like Forbes and CNN/Money consistently put Indianapolis in the top ten states for business in the United States. Find available business accommodation here.


Milwaukee is one of the fastest-growing cities in this list. It is home to no less than 6 Fortune 500 companies and it is home to a wide range of business development centers. Organizations like the Small Business Development Center at UW-Milwaukee provide a variety of resources for business owners in the state to develop their businesses more thoroughly. This city is growing especially fast as a major service and healthcare center. Manufacturing jobs once were the mainstay here, but those jobs have mostly been shipped overseas. The city of Milwaukee has taken steps to remedy the shortages caused by this and has invested heavily in the service and healthcare industries. In fact, healthcare jobs account for at least 27% of all employment in the city.


Ohio in general is seeing a major resurgence as a center for business as it shifts development toward the service, education and finance industries. Columbus is known for having one of the most diverse economic environments in the east north-central area of the United States. There are major companies representing the fashion industry, the banking industry and any other industry imaginable in this city. The diversity in its economic environment is credited with sparing Columbus during the financial collapse of 2008. Since Columbus was not impacted nearly as much as most other cities, it was able to continue its standard pace of development throughout the crisis. This helped to put more resources into essential programs like the Ohio Small Business Development Center.


Cleveland has a diverse economy that is largely supported by the healthcare industry. While there are many different types of industries in this city, the healthcare industry is definitely the most active. The Cleveland Clinic is one of the country's leading research and treatment hospitals. It employs more than 37,000 people in the city. Cleveland is making a major push toward software and technology development in the downtown area. There are a number of disused warehouse spaces from the city's manufacturing days that are being retrofitted and developed for technology companies. This is happening thanks to the help of local legislators and business development groups like the Downtown Cleveland Alliance.

Putting it Together

There are many different types of industries that support this part of the United States. What sets this region apart from others is the diversity found in the economic environment. Some areas of the country have not been able to recover from the loss of manufacturing jobs to overseas factories. However, this region has been able to sense the shifting winds and adjust its economics accordingly. This great foresight has helped to make these cities some of the most business friendly in the entire country.