Small Business Dynamism
Identifying Women & Minority-Owned Prime Growth Small Businesses
16 January 2019
By Steve Waters
Founder & CEO, SMB Intelligence
This continually updated map identifies current prime growth small businesses that are women or minority-owned, and determines the current socioeconomic status of the communities they are located in.
Prime growth firms are independents or small chains, that are employers, with a commercial location, that are currently at a seed (new, pre-opening) or expansion (high growth) development stage. They are the small businesses currently most likely to be growth-motivated and receptive to new solutions, and if they are successful in their current growth plans, to experience substantial growth and create new jobs.
The number of women-owned small businesses is increasing significantly faster than men-owned firms1, but they are more likely to experience challenges accessing the solutions they need to startup and expand2.
Minority owners have higher rates of business creation than their counterparts3, and immigrants start businesses at nearly twice the rate as their native-born counterparts4. However, minority and immigrant-owned firms are more likely to experience challenges accessing the solutions they need to startup and expand5.
The purpose of this dataset is to help government, nonprofits and companies maintain a high-level view of current prime growth small businesses with women & minority owners, in order to more effectively deliver growth solutions to them. The complete dataset contains full firm details and contact info.
The map is interactive, click on a pinpoint to view the available insight – dark green points are new, seed stage firms, light green are expansion stage.
Request access to this dataset.
2. Brookings Institute Hamilton Project, “Minority and Women Entrepreneurs: Building Capital, Networks, and Skills”, March 2015. Available online.
3. Klein, Joyce A. “Bridging the Divide: How Business Ownership Can Help Close the Racial Wealth Gap”, Aspen Institute, January 2017. Available online.
4. The Partnership for a New American Economy, “Open For Business – How Immigrants are Driving Small Business Creation in the United States”, August 2012. Available online
5. Klein, Joyce A. “Bridging the Divide: How Business Ownership Can Help Close the Racial Wealth Gap”, Aspen Institute, January 2017. Available online.
Prime growth small businesses are sourced from our bi-weekly Prime Growth Briefing. SMB Intelligence uses proprietary open-source intelligence (OSINT) methods applied through a combination of machine analysis and human analytics to continually monitor over 30,000 real estate, editorial, public government data, social media and other sources to track planned growth activity in the small business sector. We apply Prime Growth Classification to that data to identify prime growth firms, and then aggregate additional data points to determine key characteristics including their current job creation status, contact details and digital engagement. We then geocode each prime growth firm, assign a US census tract, and use extensive public government data to determine the current socioeconomic status of the community each firm is located in.
Firm format is either independent or small chain. We define an independent as a single establishment (location) firm with less than 500 employees. It’s important to note that while we include firms with up to 500 employees, nearly all (98%) of small businesses have less than 100 employees, and 96% have less than 50. We define a small chain as any firm with more than 1 and less than 20 establishments. This also applies to firms with several establishments that are not normally perceived as “chains”, such as tech and manufacturing companies with several office locations.
Development stage refers to where the firm is in their business lifecycle. Prime growth firms are currently at a seed or expansion development stage. We define seed stage as a new, pre-revenue, pre-opening firm currently planning their launch. We define expansion stage as an existing firm currently planning to add an establishment, relocate the firm or an establishment, or that has recently closed a substantial fundraising round.
Employer firm confirms that the firm is an employer – they have employees beyond the owner, accuracy is 98%. All prime growth firms are employers (or in the case of seed stage firms, they will be once they launch).
Commercial location confirms that the firm is not operating from a residence, accuracy is 98%. All prime growth firms have commercial locations (or in the case of seed stage firms, they will once they launch).
Job creation status is determined through a proprietary process, accuracy is 97%. Current means the firm is currently hiring for newly created jobs. Near future means the firm will be adding newly created jobs in the near future.
Opening or expansion date determines when the firm opening or expansion is scheduled for. Firms with “current” status are expansion stage firms who have recently closed a substantial funding round. SMB Intelligence clients can access specific opening / expansion timeframes.
Women-owned determines if the owner of the firm is a woman. We use a proprietary process to determine women-owned status, accuracy is 96%.
Prime growth segment determines which Prime Growth segment the firm is categorized as. Prime Growth Classification groups prime growth firms into one of nine segments based on their current growth priorites. Growth priorities define the format and scale of growth an owner is currently working to accomplish. Learn more about Prime Growth Classification.
Opportunity Zones are a new community development program established by Congress in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 to encourage long-term investments in low-income urban and rural communities nationwide. The Opportunity Zones program provides a tax incentive for investors to re-invest their unrealized capital gains into Opportunity Funds that are dedicated to investing into Opportunity Zones designated by the chief executives of every U.S. state and territory. Learn more at Economic Innovation Group. Opportunity Zone designation is based on the June 14, 2018 dataset from the Department of Treasury CDFI Fund.
Low income tract determines if the median income of the tract the firm / establishment is located in is less than 80% of the median income of the surrounding metro area, based on 5 Year ACS Data 2012-2106 (the latest available).
Concentrated poverty determines if a tract has more than 40% of individuals living at or below the poverty line, or is three or more times the average tract poverty rate for the metro / micro area, whichever is lower. Data is from the Department of Housing and Urban Development 2018 Areas of Concentrated Poverty File, and is based on 5 Year ACS Data 2012-2016.
ReCap (Ethnically concentrated areas of poverty) determines if an area of concentrated poverty has a non-white population of more than 50%, or if it’s outside of a metro / micro area, a non-white population of more than 20%. Data is from the Department of Housing and Urban Development 2018 Areas of Concentrated Poverty File, and is based on 5 Year ACS Data 2012-2016.
Area economic index provides insight into the level of economic distress or advantage of the census tract the firm / establishment is located in, in relation to the surrounding metro area. The index is calculated by dividing the median income of the census tract by the median income of the metro statistical area based on 5 year ACS data 2012-2016, providing a percentage. We define under 80% as economically distressed, and over 120% as advantaged.
FEMA disaster area determines if the census tract is located in a county designated a disaster area eligible for individual assistance within the previous three years. Data is from FEMA, 2018.