Melting Pot

San Antonio boasts more minority-owned startups than almost anywhere in U.S.

San Antonio boasts more minority-owned startups than most of the U.S.

San Antonio skyline
San Antonio's leads the way with minority-owned startups. Photo by SeanPavonePhoto/Getty Images

Alamo City is known for its diversity, and that extends to the businesses sector, too. Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau's Annual Survey of Entrepreneurs, Volusion published a report naming the 15 cities with the most minority-owned startups, and the San Antonio-New Braunfels market ranks No. 6 in the U.S., and No. 1 in Texas.

Forty-five percent of its startups (1,543 startups) are owned by minorities, says the report. While this percentage is enough to secure top placement on the list, San Antonio's actual minority population is 65.7 percent, so the Alamo City still has room to close the gap.

According to Volusion's study, 4,160 people work at the city's minority-owned startups, and the gross sales of these companies is in the $500 million to $1 billion range. The top industry for these startups in the area is retail trade. 

"San Antonio’s diversified economy includes advanced manufacturing, aerospace, information technology, energy, and defense," reads the report. "However, minority entrepreneurs are most likely to own businesses in retail trade."

The report points to local resource the Minority Business Development Agency, which, "in addition to its year-round service offerings ... celebrates Minority Enterprise Development Week every fall with events, awards, and networking opportunities."

Two other Texas metros land on the list. The Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington market ranks No. 12, immediately ahead of Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land at No. 13. In Dallas, 35.5 percent of startups are minority owned, a total of 4,357 startups with 23,992 employees. Similarly, 34.5 percent of Houston startups are minority owned. That's a total of 3,697 businesses employing 15,673 workers.

All of the Texas markets featured in the study boast a higher percentage of minority-owned startups compared to the national average, which is only 27.4 percent. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, almost 40 percent of the country's population identifies as nonwhite, and some estimates predict the U.S. will be considered a "majority-minority" country by 2044.

The top three markets are all in California: No. 1, San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara; No. 2, Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario; and No. 3, Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim. In each, about half of the area's startups are minority owned.


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