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100 Fastest-Growing Inner City Businesses

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Methodology

The Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC)founded by Harvard Business School Professor Michael E. Porter in 1994, defines inner cities as core urban areas with higher unemployment and poverty rates and lower median incomes than their surrounding metropolitan statistical areas. Every year, ICIC identifies, ranks, and spotlights the 100 fastest-growing businesses located in America’s inner cities. In 2016, Companies were ranked by revenue growth over the five-year period between 2011 and 2015.

ICIC relies on a national network of nominating partners, including city offices, economic development organizations, and small business development corporations, to find many of the businesses that appear on this list. Key partners in 2016 were Staples, Chevron, JumpStart, Kaiser Permanente, New York City Department of Small Business Services, and World Business Chicago. This list was audited by the independent accounting firm Rucci, Bardaro, and Falzone, PC.

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From a high-tech commercial fishing outlet in Boston to a socially responsible apparel company in Oakland, there’s great variety in the types of businesses thriving in America’s urban centers and creating jobs where they are needed most. Here are this year's 100 fastest-growing inner city companies, as ranked by the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC).

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62.

AE Works

Courtesy of AE Works Ltd

Leadership, craftsmanship, and integrity are the fundamentals of AE Works. Michael Cherock started AE Works focused on those exact values instilled upon him during his time in the Navy. He started AE Works because he thought “we could do things a little differently” and bring purpose to work as architects and engineers. Since its founding in 2007, AE Works has grown to a company of about 30 employees, attributing the growth to a combination of commitment to social goals and marketplace alignment. They are proud to maintain status as a certified B Corporation, meeting a higher standard of transparency, accountability and performance, and harnessing the power of business to create positive impact.

Company Information

Five-Year Growth Rate (%) 196%
2015 Revenues ($M) $5.50
HQ Location Pittsburgh, PA
Business Leader(s) Michael Cherock
Title Founder, President and CEO

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