A new survey sheds positive light on the state of the entrepreneur in Columbus. The Columbus Chapter of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization recently released the results to their annual EO Global Entrepreneur Indicator (GEI) that identifies trends and information on the economic experience of entrepreneurs in Central Ohio and across the world.
Taken by entrepreneurs on a global scale, the indicator looks at an entrepreneurs’ experience in the past six months and coming six months, and compares data on a local, national and global level. The findings are general identifiers of how the market is supporting business growth and opportunity for existing and new businesses.
“You want to talk economic growth and business forecasting, then you want to know what your entrepreneurs are saying, and that is what the GEI gives us,” notes EO Columbus President Sandy Fekete. “The GEI predicts economic trends in a number of areas, including job creation, profits and debt loads. This economic forecasting and insight into the business environment provides us with real data from real business owners.”
Columbus saw positive results, ranking above the global average in most categories.
“The GEI provides us with a baseline for the state of entrepreneurship in Columbus when comparing on a global level,” Fekete says. “The GEI takes our data and analyzes it against other comparable cities to Columbus, as well as entrepreneurs on a global level and tells us how we operate – are the entrepreneurs in this city as successful in the past six months and as optimistic of the next six months, as entrepreneurs around the world. And right now, the answer is yes –in most indicators, we are more successful and more optimistic.”
Columbus ranked above the global average and other Ohio cities with a 71 percent increase in employment over the last six months. The global average came in at 61 percent, with Cincinnati seeing a 68 percent increase, and Cleveland, 59 percent. For the next six months, the global increase is only expected to tip 33 percent, while Columbus is predicted to fare better at 65 percent.
Businesses are hiring both full- and part-time employees, with approximately 72 percent and 56 percent increases respectively.
Columbus also saw the highest increase in profits at 61 percent compared to the global, Cincinnati and Cleveland numbers. That number is expected to increase to 67 percent over the next six months. Reflecting that number was a 82.46 percent increase in revenue for Columbus entrepreneurs, compared to only a 68.12 percent increase globally.
EO Communications Chair Anegla Petro notices a trend when it comes to growth over the next six months.
“When we look ahead to the next six months, we slow a little bit and we actually seem to be a little bit behind Cincinnati and Cleveland,” she says, adding a possible reason for the decrease in numbers is that Columbus is and has been a bit ahead of the curve when it comes to growth.
While the climate is overwhelmingly positive, “How do we get more to keep growing?” Petro asks. Columbus needs to focus on getting more access to capital and employees – things that help small businesses grow.
The cut and dry statistics are only part of the equation. The attitude of EO members also reflect positivity.
“We are in an environment where people in Columbus are absolutely not afraid to expand or start another small business,” Petro says. “It’s a very fertile space right now for entrepreneurs.”
Survey indicators back that quote up as well. Eighty-two percent are inclined to start a new business in the current entrepreneur climate of Columbus.
The positive survey number also garner attention and help educate national eyes on the business climate on Columbus.
“It’s one more way to approach the rest of the country and say we are open for business,” Petro says.
Visit Entrepreneurs’ Organization Columbus for more information.