Growing Jobs in the Inner City

Small firms with fewer than 20 employees are the greatest source of new net employment in inner cities, and account for 80 percent of total employment in...
by | April 13, 2008

Small firms with fewer than 20 employees are the greatest source of new net employment in inner cities, and account for 80 percent of total employment in the economy. However, the job-growth rate in inner cities still lags behind the rest of metropolitan areas. To accelerate inner-city job growth, the Small Business Administration is testing out a new pilot project that focuses on small, poised-for-growth inner-city companies. The Emerging 200 initiative will work with 200 companies in 11 cities to develop a winning expansion strategy for each business. To qualify, participating companies must be headquartered in the inner city, must be at least three years old and must have achieved $400,000 in revenue. These companies will have the opportunity to work with experienced mentors, attend workshops and develop connections with their peers, city leaders and the financial community. In particular, the program will focus on connecting companies to state and local resources already in place. The hope is to expand the initiative to a broader set of inner cities in 2009. The 11 pilot cities are Boston, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Atlanta, New Orleans, Memphis, Chicago, Des Moines, Milwaukee, Albuquerque and Oakland.