Atlanta named top U.S. city for startups outside of New York, San Francisco

Over 2,300 companies participated in AJC's 2018 Top Workplaces Contest But only 150 could be included in this year's Top Workplaces awards Employees across the metro Atlanta responded to print and online surveys Energage −a Philadeplphia-based human resources consulting company − surveyed 256 metro area companies Throughout those companies, more than 55,000 employees participated Employees favored geniuine care from their employer and an investment in each employee Congratulations to all the winners!

San Francisco and New York may be notorious for startups galore, but Atlanta is quietly making its mark in the business sphere.

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According to's latest analysis, Atlanta is the top-ranked city in the nation for "fresh and exciting startups" aside from the Big Apple and the Golden Gate City.

Experts at the business site collected data on the 41 largest metropolitan areas in the country from the U.S. Census Bureau, Startup Genome and CBRE Group to determine the 10 non-New York/San Francisco cities to keep an eye on.

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The ranking is based on eight metrics known to “significantly impact a startup’s survival and growth,” including number of startups, venture capital investments, tech talent pool growth, population concentration of millennials, city gross domestic product, college attainment rate, travel time to work and cost of living.

Of the 41 cities examined, Atlanta came out on top, ranking in the top 10 across four major categories.

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Here’s more on how the city fared:

  • Overall rank: 1
  • Tech talent labor pool growth: 4
  • Number of startups: 6
  • City GDP: 8
  • Venture capital investments: 10
  • Population concentration of millennials: 11
  • College attainment rate: 17
  • Cost of living: 19

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“While the sprawling city performed well in almost all categories, it was hindered slightly by its long average commute times, placing 39th in the travel time to work metric,” the report said. Not much of a surprise for Atlanta locals.

The metro was also recently ranked among the top three best places to start a career, according to WalletHub.

And it was previously named one of the 50 best American cities for job seekers by employment search engine

Here are the top 10 U.S. startup cities that are not New York or San Francisco, according to

  1. Atlanta
  2. Seattle
  3. Chicago
  4. Boston
  5. Dallas
  6. San Diego
  7. Minneapolis
  8. Austin, Texas
  9. Los Angeles
  10. Philadelphia

Explore the full ranking at