Durham’s low rent, startup scene and hyper-educated workforce has landed it a prime spot on Inc. magazine’s top 50 cities to launch a business.
The national magazine has ranked the Bull City at No.3 on its Surge Cities list, a guide to the 50 best cities for startups in 2020.
Only Austin, Texas and Salt Lake City, Nevada, ranked higher at No.1 and No.2, respectively.
Once an “eyesore” after its tobacco factories closed in the 1980s, the magazine says of Durham, today the North Carolina hub has been rebuilt with shops, offices and co-working spaces revitalizing the entire city.
“Tech companies flock here in part for the low rent: at $26.87 per square foot of commercial space, it’s a fraction of what you’ll find in places like New York City or San Francisco. Durham has one of the highest rates of entrepreneurship per capita in the country, and while a chunk of the city’s funding comes from big banks that tend to be risk-averse, the area has seen an uptick in access to early-stage capital thanks to younger firms like Bull City Ventures and Triangle Angel Partners.”
Co-working space American Underground, owned by WRAL TechWire’s parent company Capitol Broadcasting, also gets a special shout-out.
Durham also faired well in other categories, placing third for high-growth company density, eighth for next business creation and 10th for job creation.