Photo by sydney Rae on Unsplash

The PenFed Foundation, in collaboration with Edelman Intelligence, conducted a study to identify the best cities in the U.S. for veteran entrepreneurs.

The study identified factors that are critical to the success of veteran entrepreneurs including the city’s economic growth, livability, support for veterans and friendliness to new businesses. The researcher used data from several government agencies including the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Census Bureau and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to ensure objective rankings.

The best city overall is the New York-Newark-Jersey City metro area followed by the metro areas in Chicago, Dallas and Seattle. The best cities in terms of providing the best resources to support new businesses are San Francisco and Cleveland.

The top cities for veteran resources are New York and Washington. New York provides many quality-of-life benefits such as public transit and reportedly spends more than $20 million on its veterans’ programs.  

When it comes to veteran focus, the highest-ranked cities are New York and Washington D.C. The cities were ranked based on the number of veteran associations and support groups, the number of VA-accredited attorneys and veteran employment. New York has more than 2,000 veterans’ organizations while D.C. has more than 1,000. Both cities have large veteran populations and provide sufficient employment opportunities for veterans.

In terms of attractiveness for starting a business, San Francisco and Austin earned the top spots. The cities were ranked based on several factors including venture capital investment, educated labor force, business survival rate and corporate income tax rate.

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