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Chicago Dominates Inner City 100

Mark Marich

For each of the past 15 years, the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City comes out with a list of the fastest-growing urban startups across the U.S.—companies that create new jobs and wages for those in core urban areas with higher unemployment and poverty rates and lower median incomes. Happy Family, an organic baby food supplier based in New York City, tops the Inner City 100 for 2013 with a five year growth rate of 205%. Revolution Foods out of Oakland came in second place with a growth rate of 173% and Coyote Logistics from Chicago finished third with 126%.

The “trucking company without the trucks” wasn’t alone on the list as it was one of 11 entries from Chicago on the list. The next closest cities in terms of representation on the list was Philadelphia with six companies and Oakland and Boston with five each.

According to ICIC, Inner City 100 firms represent 146 cities and 41 states—creating more than 76,000 new jobs and generating $2.1 billion in annual sales.

The other Chicago companies on the list are:

  • Rise Interactive (14th / 65%)
  • Dean Media Group (18th / 49%)
  • Gorilla Group (29th / 37%)
  • MSDSonline (43rd / 30%)
  • Nitel (49th / 25%)
  • Orbit Media Studios (60th / 22%)
  • West Monroe Partners (65th / 21%)
  • Call One (81st / 15%)
  • E.C. Ortiz and Co. (89th / 13%)
  • LaSalle Network (91st / 12%)

For the 2013 list, ICIC received more than 2,000 nominations. Companies were ranked by compound annual growth rate (CAGR) based on their revenue over the five-year period between 2007 and 2011, the last year for which complete data was available.

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