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South Carolina Ranks 5th In America

........and lands two of our cities in the TOP 10 Best In Entrepreneur Cities in America?


The cities of Charleston and Columbia have been ranked as the second and eighth best places in the nation for entrepreneurial activity in a new national survey published by Entrepreneur magazine.


The survey, conducted by the National Policy Research Council, a Washington D.C. think tank, is the basis of Entrepreneur's annual "Hot Cities" ranking. The results appear in the magazine's September issue.


Overall, the magazine said, the NPRC determined that seven of the top 10 states for entrepreneurial activity are located in the Southeast.


The report stated that the Southeast bounced back from the economic downturn of 2001 and 2002 faster than other part of the country thanks to economic development strategies that stressed diversification of local economies.


National Policy Research Council uses what it calls its Entrepreneurial Activity Index to measure the best places to start and grow a company. The index is made up of two parts, each dedicated to measuring a key aspect of entrepreneurship: business formation and business growth.


To measure business formation, researchers identified the percentage of businesses that were started four to 14 years ago and that employ five or more workers today. To determine growth, researchers measure the percentage of those young businesses that have experienced rapid growth over the last four years.


This is not the first time our best South Carolina entrepreneurial cities have been in the top ten.  It was just a few years ago that Columbia was listed as the number 1 entrepreneurial city in America.  Columbia, Charleston and Greenville keep coming in each year in the top 5, the top 10 or the top 15.   Thank You, South Carolina entrepreneurs for the great job you are doing in keeping our state among the best of the best.


The State of South Carolina finished 5th overall in the magazines rankings for 2006.  These are not the only positive numbers when it comes to entrepreneurs. The South Carolina Technology Alliance has been tracking the new patents for our state and  our year over year improvement is up 31.4%.  It takes entrepreneurs to turn these patents into marketable products. This is yet another reason why technology and innovation are so important to our state. 


In a  recent study by the South Carolina Technology Alliance in preparation of their annual report on technology and innovation for the state they will report on technology salaries.  Technology jobs last year were paying over $19,383 more than other sector jobs.  This year's numbers have increased to $20,965. The average technology job in our state is paying $52,272 for 2006 as compared to $49,611 for last year. 


From an economic development view, we need to continue hunting for some big game, while putting more effort into our small high tech innovation entrepreneurial companies as they work to find the next BIG THING in the world of technology. We all know that our small businesses make up a very large percentage of our South Carolina work force.


Congratulations to the hundreds of men and women  who are working on economic development projects all over our state. These are the people who are putting it on the line everyday to "Create South Carolina's Future Through Technology and Innovation."  Thank You, for the job you do every day to keep our state's ranking high and higher.


Entrepreneur's full listing includes 276 small, mid-size and large consolidated metropolitan statistical areas in 50 states and 784 counties.


By:  Thomas E. Persons, Sr.

       President & CEO

       South Carolina Technology Alliance