Small businesses and startup firms are the engines that keep Missouri moving forward, creating jobs and pioneering innovations that help the Show-Me State compete in today’s global economy. And with 95 percent of total businesses in the state classified as small businesses (1-49 employees), we have the manpower, tools, and proven track record of providing a welcoming, supportive environment for small business owners and entrepreneurs to feel at home. In fact, the latest U.S. Census data (2013) found that Missouri is leading the nation in new business creation, with new business numbers surging by more than 16 percent, more than double of any other state in the country.
You may have heard of up and coming social media platform LockerDome, or maybe national video news service Newsy, or even global provider of probiotic products, SCD Probiotics? These are just a few of the hundreds of startups popping up around the state and growing the state’s tech and innovative scene. But even big corporations—like Express Scripts, Boeing and World Wide Technology, all of which are Fortune 100 companies, had to start somewhere and they chose Missouri. Take advantage of the state’s targeted resources, talented workforce, and support for innovation, and start growing your business right here in the Show-Me State. Print handout: Missouri's Entrepreneurial-Based Resources.
National Accolades for Missouri’s Startup & Small Business Community:
- #11 (Missouri) - Small Business Job Growth: Paychex, March 2017
- #5 (Jefferson City) - Best Small Cities to Start a Business, April 2017
- #7 (St. Louis) and #11 (Springfield) - Best 150 Large Cities to Start a Business, May 2017
- #6 (Missouri) - Best States to Start a Business, June 2017
- #9 (Missouri) - 2016 Startup Activity Index: Kauffman Foundation, August 2016
- #7 (Missouri) - Risk Capital and Entrepreneurial Infrastructure, Sept. 2016
- #3 (Missouri) - Highest Share of Startups: U.S. Census Bureau, Sept. 2016
- #1 (St. Louis) - City with the Fastest-Growing Startup Scene: Business Insider, Jan. 2016
- #4 (Jefferson City) – 2016 Best Small Cities to Start a Business: WalletHub, April 2016
- #2 (Kansas City) - Top Digital Cities: Center for Digital Government, Nov. 2016
- #2 (St. Louis) - Metro Area with the Largest Absolute Increase in Startups: U.S. Census Bureau, Sept. 2016
- #4 (Springfield) - Metro with the Fastest-Growing Rate of New Startups: FiveThirtyEight, Sept. 2016
- #5 (St. Joseph) - Metro with the Fastest-Growing Rate of New Startups: FiveThirtyEight, Sept. 2016
- #2 (Kansas City) - Best City for Women in Tech: SmartAsset, Feb. 2016
- #9 (Kansas City) - Economic Growth Potential: Business Facilities: August 2016
- #12 (Columbia) – 2016 Best Cities for Young Entrepreneurs: NerdWallet, January 2016
- #1 (Missouri) – New Business Creation: U.S. Census Bureau, 2015
- #1 (St. Louis) – Startup Cities 2015: Popular Mechanics, February 2015
- #3 (Springfield) – 2015 Best Cities to Start a Business: WalletHub, April 2015
- #9 (St. Louis) – 2015 Best Cities to Found a Startup Outside Silicon Valley & New York: DataFox, Dec. 2015
- Top 9 (Kansas City) – Nine Hot Startup Cities: Entrepreneur Magazine, August 2015
If your startup exhausted all funding sources and you still need access to capital to expand, connect with your local economic development agency/local government to learn about how this loan program can help finance new machinery and working equipment, construct space, or provide working capital.
Have the next big idea in tech or innovation? This co-investment program provides early-stage capital to help startups leverage and attract private investments necessary to fund product development, commercialization, or to hire key staff to help your startup grow.
These low-interest or zero-interest direct loans help small businesses take steps toward expanding and creating jobs.
The state’s number one incentive tool for expansion and retention, this program helps businesses access capital through withholdings or tax credits to embark on facility expansions and create jobs. This program can also help businesses purchase equipment to maintain its facility in Missouri.
From co-working spaces and incubators, to networking opportunities and angel investors, learn about resources in your area that make up Missouri’s supportive startup ecosystem.
Located throughout the state, the centers work closely with their associated universities to develop high-growth advanced technology companies and commercialize innovations. The centers provide specialized facilities, access to capital, technical and business experts, resourcs and specialized service providers.
Helping small businesses grow is a team effort. Dozens of organizations throughout the state are dedicated to supporting entrepreneurship. Connect with chambers, economic development councils, training partners and educational institutions that provide a variety of services geared towards innovation and enterprise.
If your business or startup firm required high-speed internet to carry out its day-to-day duties, Missouri has you covered! Home to some of the fastest internet speeds in the world, Missouri makes it easy to tap into global markets and serve clients worldwide. In fact, one of Missouri’s most concentrated industries is Internet Search Providers, Search Portals, and Data Processing, providing the high-tech infrastructure that allows startups and small businesses to grow and succeed in a competitive economy.
Currently, Missouri has the 2nd fastest average internet download speed in the nation (36.7 Mbps) and the 14th fastest internet upload speed in the nation (10.5 Mbps). Eight Missouri cities rank among the top 100 for fastest average internet download speeds: Grandview (10) at 111.48 Mbps, Tipton (25) at 66.94 Mbps, Kansas City (26) at 66.71 Mbps, Belton (35) at 61.93 Mbps, Pacific (65) at 54.73 Mbps, Marshall (68) at 54.51 Mbps, Pevely (75) at 54.03 Mbps, O’Fallon (96)at 52.62 Mpbs. Additionally, five Missouri cities rank among the top 100 for fastest average internet upload speeds: Grandview (4) at 108.47 Mbps, Marshall (10) at 65.15 Mbps, Tipton (11) at 64.37 Mbps, Kansas City (14) at 56.95 Mbps, and Belton (21) at 49.09 Mbps.