2018 Best of The Midwest:

Startup City Rankings

Our goal is to provide an analytical, objective benchmark to help companies and individuals alike understand how micro-environments within the Midwest are performing relative to each other.

Explore the Cities

< 25
Moved up in rank
Moved down in rank

How Rankings are Calculated

Startup Activity

41% Weight

A measure of how active the tech community in the city is, and the size and quality of the network available to a new startup. It considers factors such as the number of startups present, the number of exits and (one of the new additions this year) the growth in startup activity and the scale of outcomes (both large exits and large fundraises).

Source: Pitchbook

Access To Resources

41% Weight

A measure of how supportive the city's environment is, and the value-add it can provide to help a startup grow. It considers factors such as the quality of the talent, investor activity, accelerators, universities and government support.

Source: The US Census, US Patent Office, Pitchbook, US News & World Report and the Seed Accelerator Rankings Project

Business Climate

18% Weight

A measure of how conducive the city's economic environment is to attract and scale a business. It includes factors such as the cost of living, labor costs, population and GDP per capita. This year we added a "Connectivity" subcategory here, which measures the quality of airport and highway infrastructure.

Source: The Bureau of Labor Statistics, the US Census, the Tax Foundation, the Bureau of Economic Analysis and Google Flights.

2017 - 2018 Highlights

Annual Rankings