The Greensboro City Council gives a lot of lip service to being business friendly.
However, according to one national survey, lip service is all you get because Greensboro doesn’t do a good job of being business friendly compared to other cities in the state.
According to WalletHub.com, Durham is the best large city in North Carolina to start a business and the fifth best in the country.
Charlotte is the second best large city in the state to start a business and eighth best in the country.
Raleigh is not far behind as the third best city in the state and the 11th best in the country, followed closely by Winston-Salem as the 13th best in the country.
So, the list includes North Carolina’s largest city, Charlotte; second largest city, Raleigh; fourth largest city, Durham; and fifth largest city, Winston-Salem as all in the top 15 in the country.
Then you have Greensboro, currently the third largest city in the state, on the list as the worst large city in the state to start a business and the 48th best in the country.
According to the press release, WalletHub compared 19 metrics in three key dimensions – business environment, access to resources and business costs.
In the business environment category – which includes the average growth in number of small businesses, five-year business survival rate and job growth – Greensboro ranked 79th in the country while Charlotte ranked 11th and Durham 38th.
In the Access to Resources category Durham ranked 5th, Raleigh 8th and Greensboro 55th.
However, in the business costs category – which includes office space affordability, labor costs, corporate taxes and cost of living – Greensboro ranked second in the country behind only Winston-Salem. In that category, Durham ranked 21st in the country, Charlotte 32nd and Raleigh 31st.
While lists like this one by Wallethub make subjective judgments on how each of the metrics is weighted, there is some objective data that would support Durham being business friendly, and that is population growth.
From 2010 to 2020, Durham grew by 28.7 percent while Greensboro grew by 13.5 percent. According to the US Census Bureau, in 2022, Greensboro had a population of 298,263 and Durham was at 285,527.