Total Businesses, Ownership Statistics for Cities

Many cities experienced significant increases or declines in numbers of businesses between 2007 and 2012.

The U.S. Census Bureau publishes a series of data on businesses for states and local jurisdictions as part of the Survey of Business Owners, last conducted in 2012. We've compiled data showing the most recent changes for larger U.S. cities.

The vast majority of business ownership recorded in the survey reflects unincorporated companies with no paid employees. Numbers of businesses owned by women, Hispanics and different minority groups saw large gains since 2007, but data suggests most of these companies are small operations without paid workers.

A majority of cities experienced declines in total numbers of businesses from 2007 to 2012 when only those with paid employees are considered. This isn't particularly surprising, given that the 2007 survey was conducted just before the Great Recession began and unemployment remained high in 2012. McKinney, Texas, (+49 percent) and Frisco, Texas, (+38 percent) experienced the largest percentage increases in total employers; Austin also added a net gain of 1,800 businesses over the five-year period.

This table compares cities' annual totals and minority business ownership data for only companies employing paid workers:

Data shown for jurisdictions with 10,000 or more total firms. Minority businesses are owned by those not identified as Non-Hispanic white.
SOURCE: Governing analysis of U.S. Census Bureau 2012 Survey of Business Owners, 2007 Survey of Business Owners


Select a city below to view data for numbers of companies with and without paid employees, along with business ownership statistics for racial and ethnic minorities.

Data Notes

  • Results for some cities were either not published or were suppressed.
  • "Minority Ownership" refers specifically to businesses owned by racial and ethnic minorities, or those not identifying themselves as non-Hispanic white
  • The Survey of Business Owners is conducted for companies or firms rather than for individual establishments (locations).
  • The Census Bureau estimates numbers of businesses from a sample of different datasets; a complete census of all businesses is not conducted.
  • A change to the methodology affects comparability from prior surveys for “white” and “some other race” ownership categories.
  • See a list of definitions used.
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