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Anchorage named one of the best cities to start a business

By James Gaddis 8:04 PM December 20, 2013

Local entrepreneur Garyn Johnson has benefitted from the favorable business climate.

ANCHORAGE – Budding entrepreneurs might want to consider setting up shop in Anchorage when starting a small business.

A recent study by CreditDonkey.com ranked Anchorage #6 on its list of Best Small Cities to Start a Business. Boulder, Colo., topped the list.

The study takes into account various factors, such as the percentage of small business failures. In Anchorage, just 12 percent of startups end up failing. An educated population also helped Anchorage make the list: The study found that 31 percent of residents have at least a bachelor’s degree. Anchorage also has the second highest percentage of people employed by small businesses — a little more than eight percent.

Local entrepreneur Garyn Johnson has benefitted from the favorable business climate.

The former home health care worker opened Airmed Career Apparel in 2011. That was followed by a second store, Airmed Medical Apparel in September 2013. Both stores sell uniforms and scrubs for nurses, chefs and other professionals.

“It has been amazing,” Johnson said. “From the very beginning it just went up and up and we’ve been able to put it back into the business and grow it.”

But Johnson did have some help. Both she and her husband attended classes at the Alaska Small Business Development Center.

Along with the benefits highlighted in the study, ASBDC Region Director Lynn Kassert said there has been good access to startup capital in Anchorage in recent years.

“The amount of money being dispersed out through lenders up here has increased year after year,” Kassert said.

It’s a good thing, as Anchorage made the CreditDonkey.com list despite zero dollars in venture capital investment over the last two years.

CreditDonkey.com said the state’s $13 million Angel Fund has helped to make up the difference.

Click here to view the full report.


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