Bureau of Business Research


Date of this Version



Business in Nebraska vol. 58, no. 674


Copyright 2003 by Bureau of Business Research, University of Nebraska.


The April 2002 issue of Business in Nebraska reported that the economic potential of Nebraska's smaller cities was comparable to the economic potential of the state's largest cities. Data from the Labor Market Information Service ofthe Nebraska Department of Labor covering the years 1996 through 1999 were used and resulted in two principal findings. First, business starts per capita in Nebraska cities and towns with fewerthan 5,000 people were comparable to business starts per capita in the state's largest cities. Second, the proportion of businesses started in these smaller cities and towns in 1996 that still were in operation atthe end of 1999 was as great as or greater than the proportion of firms started in the state's major population centers.

These findings highlighted the need to investigate factors that contributed to the success of these start-up businesses, particularly those in smaller cities. These factors could be useful to future business start-ups in the state. A questionnaire was sent to 229 firms that began operations in 1996.