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One needn’t look too hard to find an overwhelming number of reasons why starting a company in Columbus makes outstanding business sense.

Boasting a potent mix of an affordable cost of living, a diverse industry base and the eighth-highest concentration of millennials in the U.S., Columbus is thriving in many respects. The 11-county metropolitan area’s population grew at a rate of 1.6 percent from 2016 to 2017, surpassing the Cleveland-Akron region as the second-largest metropolitan area in the state.

Given these reasons, it’s not hard to see why lists Columbus as a Top 10 city for entrepreneurs and start-ups and why Money lists it as the “Best in the Midwest” destination.


  • 2.1 million residents
  • 14 Fortune 1,000 company headquarters (5 Fortune 500) 10-hour drive to 46 percent of U.S. population
  • Average office rental rate of $61/square foot (Chicago: $255)
  • Manufacturing operating costs of 8.7% of revenue (10.4% in Chicago and Detroit)
  • Unemployment rate of 3.4% (3.8% nationwide)
  • 69.1 on the U.S. cost of living index (Boston: 87)
  • 52 college and university campuses