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Small businesses: Backbone of Minnesota’s economy

Saluting Minnesota small businesses!

Where does your first thought go when you think of Minnesota’s economy? In honor of National Small Business Week, the Minnesota Chamber would like to salute the contributions of small business to Minnesota’s economy. 

99.5% of businesses in Minnesota are considered small organizations, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Those businesses employ 46.2% of all employees statewide. While small individually, these businesses have a massive impact. 

small business

The Minnesota Chamber Foundation recently released Minnesota Entrepreneurship: A turning point, with incredible insights to learn about the growth of start-ups (almost always starting as small businesses). Here are a few noteworthy Minnesota small-business understandings. 

1. Small businesses don’t always stay small, but they can stay local. In the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce’s Entrepreneurship Report:

“Minnesota has long-been a homegrown economy. Sixteen of Minnesota’s 18 Fortune 500 companies started here, with the other two originating in Wisconsin and moving their headquarters to Minnesota decades ago. Key industry clusters – from food and agriculture to health care and medical technology – emerged from rich entrepreneurial ecosystems that fostered their early development and nurtured their success over time” (Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, 2022. Minnesota Entrepreneurship, A turning point).

2. Minnesota small businesses don’t just serve locally.

“A total of 8,469 identified firms exported goods worth $20.7 billion from Minnesota in 2019. Of those exporters, 7,268—or 85.8 percent—were small. Small firms exported goods worth $5.0 billion, making up 23.9 percent of exports by identified firms” (U.S. Census Bureau, 2018-19. A profile of U.S. importing and exporting companies).

3. New business applications surged during the pandemic.

“One of the most surprising outcomes of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the sudden and dramatic surge of entrepreneurial interest. The U.S. Census tracks month-to-month changes in new business applications through its Business Formation Statistics data series. These data show that new business applications rose by a staggering 39% in the U.S. in the first two years of the pandemic (2020 and 2021) compared to the prior two years of 2018 and 2019. New business applications have remained elevated throughout the pandemic, suggesting that the change reflects more than a one-time aberration” (Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, 2022. Minnesota Entrepreneurship, A turning point).

Are you a small business? Google has a Career Certificate program to support small businesses offering the equivalent of $10,000 in scholarships to upskill their workforce. These offerings include certifications in IT, Data Analytics, Project Management, UX Design and Marketing/E-commerce.

The Minnesota Chamber of Commerce supports small businesses by providing advocacy, knowledge, resources, and connections to help their organizations thrive. If you have a small business interested in 
joining, fill out an application today!