Biz2Credit Identifies San Jose as The Top City for Small Business for the Second Consecutive Year

NEW YORK, May 03, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Biz2Credit has identified San Jose as the “Best Small Business City in America,” based on average annual revenues in 2021, credit scores, age of business, and Biz2Credit’s proprietary BizAnalyzer score.

BizAnalyzer factors in the local business climate, including rents, labor costs, and local tax rates. Biz2Credit examined the financials of over 82,000 companies that applied for small business loans in 2021, including companies that applied for PPP loans.

According to Biz2Credit’s new study, the Top 10 Best Small Business Cities in 2021 were:

  1. San Jose
  2. Baltimore
  3. New York
  4. Boston
  5. San Francisco
  6. Los Angeles
  7. Washington, DC
  8. Portland
  9. Providence, RI
  10. Denver

“With Silicon Valley thriving, it is no surprise that San Jose has repeated as No. 1 among the Top 25 Best Small Business Cities for 2021. Other tech centers, including New York, Boston, and San Francisco also fared well,” said Biz2Credit CEO Rohit Arora, one of the nation's leading experts in small business finance, who oversaw the research. “Baltimore and Washington, DC, moved up the list dramatically, which is likely the result of an increase in the number of businesses that serve the growing federal workforce.”

Among these top 10 metropolitan areas, the leading industries were: 1) professional, scientific, and technical services, 2) retail trade, and 3) construction.

Overall, average annual revenues for small businesses in 2021 declined to $539K from $689K in 2020. This reflects the impact of the economic toll that the coronavirus had on small businesses, many of which had to close due to pandemic mitigation efforts.

Average credit scores for business owners decreased from 617 in 2020 to 604 in 2021. Clearly, the pandemic had an impact on credit scores.

“Some businesses that benefitted from PPP money in 2020 did not receive it in 2021. As operations resumed after COVID-related shutdowns, the cost of doing business went up, which hurt business owners’ credit scores,” Arora explained.

For this analysis, Biz2Credit defined "small businesses" as companies having fewer than 250 employees or less than $10 million in annual revenues. The Top 25 Cities for Small Business in 2021 are:

2021 Rank (2020 Rank)

  1. San Jose (1)
  2. Baltimore (13)
  3. New York (7)
  4. Boston (5)
  5. San Francisco-Oakland (6)
  6. Los Angeles (4)
  7. Washington, DC (12)
  8. Portland (16)
  9. Providence, RI (Unranked)
  10. Denver (14)
  11. San Diego (3)
  12. Sacramento (10)
  13. Miami-Ft. Lauderdale (2)
  14. Seattle (9)
  15. Tampa-St. Pete (8)
  16. Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL (Unranked)
  17. Austin, TX (Unranked)
  18. Port St. Lucie, FL (Unranked)
  19. Orlando (11)
  20. Houston (Unranked)
  21. Nashville (Unranked)
  22. Riverside, CA (21)
  23. Cleveland (Unranked)
  24. San Antonio (24)
  25. Philadelphia (17)

Seven cities made Biz2Credit’s “Best Small Business Cities” Top 25 that were unranked in 2020: Providence, RI; Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL; Austin, TX; Port St. Lucie, FL; Houston; Nashville; and Cleveland.

“The pandemic showed many entrepreneurs – especially those who own technology companies and other firms that can operate virtually-- that they did not need to be in large cities,” Arora added. “That’s why cities like Providence, Lakeland-Winter Haven, and Port St. Lucie made the list.”

Meanwhile, seven cities on Biz2Credit’s new Top 25 ranking for 2020 dropped off the list (2020 rank in parathesis): Raleigh (15), St. Louis (18), Charlotte (19), Chicago (20), Minneapolis-St. Paul (22), Detroit (23), and Phoenix (25).

The Top 10 metro areas by Annual Revenue*

1        Fresno, CA: $821,720
2        San Francisco: $661,241
3        San Diego: $611,083
4        Port St. Lucie, FL: $608,148
5        Denver: $603,712
6        New York: $577,173
7        Boston: $558,627
8        Austin, TX: $528,877
9        Portland: $519,757
10      San Jose: $509,485

* Average annual revenue measured during 2021

Revenues were down significantly for small businesses. In last year’s study, businesses in San Jose, Miami, New York, Seattle, and San Diego averaged over $1 million in annual revenue. A year later, in 2021, no cities on the Biz2Credit ranking had average revenues above $825,000.

“Small businesses in 2021 were dealing with COVID-related restrictions, consumer fear of going out, and the emergence of the Omicron variant, which hit late in the year, just as restaurants and entertainment venues were starting to rebound,” Arora explained.

The metropolitan areas with the Highest Number of Small Business Loan Applications in 2021 were:

  1. San Jose
  2. Baltimore
  3. New York
  4. Boston
  5. San Francisco
  6. Los Angeles
  7. Washington, DC
  8. Portland
  9. Providence
  10. Denver

The Biz2Credit analysis also examined Age of Business (in months), an indication of startup activity. There were several newcomers in 2021, including Fresno, CA; Tulsa, OK; Columbus, OH; Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL; and Memphis, TN. The top 10 cities with the youngest Age of Business (in months) were:

1.   Kansas City: 42
      Omaha: 42
      Denver: 42 (tie)
4.   Fresno, CA: 43
      Memphis: 43
      Columbus, OH: 43 (tie)
      Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL: 43 (tie)
      Washington, DC: 43 (tie)
      Tulsa, OK: 43 (tie)
10. Riverside, CA: 44
      Pittsburgh: 44 (tie)
      Seattle: 44 (tie)
      Grand Rapids, MI: 44 (tie)
      Baltimore: 44 (tie)
      Miami: 44 (tie)

“The pandemic showed many entrepreneurs – especially those who own technology-based companies -- that they did not need to be in large cities,” Arora said. “That’s why we see Midwestern cities like Kansas City, Omaha, Columbus, Pittsburgh, and Grand Rapids on the list of youngest businesses, which is a sign of new businesses launching.”

When sorted by Credit Score, tech hubs, such as San Jose, New York, San Francisco, and Boston showed were among the cities with the highest FICO scores.

1.        Providence: 618
2.        San Jose: 617
           New York: 617 (tie)
4.        Boston: 614
5.        San Francisco: 610
6.        Los Angeles: 609
           Seattle: 609 (tie)
8.        Sacramento: 608
9.        Portland: 607
           Washington, DC: 607 (tie)

“Average Credit Scores were down significantly in 2021. For instance, in last year’s study, top-ranked San Jose came out on top with an average score of 650, and No.10 Tampa-St. Pete was at 629,” Arora explained. “This year, the city with the highest average credit score was Providence at 618, a figure that would not have cracked the top 10 in 2020.”

About the Biz2Credit Best Small Business Cities in America Study
Biz2Credit analyzed 82,000 businesses with less than 250 employees and less than $10 million in annual revenues from across the country that have been in operation for more than one year. Visit for the full analysis of the study and for infographics.

About Biz2Credit
Founded in 2007, Biz2Credit has arranged more than $7 billion in small business financing. The company is expanding its industry-leading technology in custom digital platform solutions for banks and other financial institutions, investors, and service providers. Visit or Twitter @Biz2Credit, Facebook, and LinkedIn

Media Contact: John Mooney, (908) 720-6057,