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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 2017, Companies were ranked by revenue growth over the five-year period between 2012 and 2016.

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 2017 were Staples, Chevron, FedEx, Kaiser Permanente, City of Oakland, Baltimore Development Corporation, Blackstone Entrepreneur’s Network, Urban League of Louisiana, World Business Chicago, Team JXN, and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City. This list was audited by the independent accounting firm Rucci, Bardaro, and Falzone, PC.

From an organic candy shop in Oakland, Calif. to a towing company based in Texas, there is a wide swath 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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7.

Lamps.com

Courtesy of Lamps.com

Lamps.com is a lighting and design company with two distinct divisions: online storefront and design services. The online storefront part is aimed at serving the individual in search of design inspiration, as well as the trade professionals seeking a reliable and resourceful partner. The design services sector partners with architects, interior designers, and multi-unit developers to create meaningful experiences through lighting and design. Company founder Chris DiMarco left Wall Street and joined his longtime friend, current CEO Anthony Balsamo, and a team of investors to maximize on a gap he saw in the online presence of lighting sales.

Company Information

Five-Year Growth Rate (%) 726.18%
2016 Revenues ($M) $5.10
HQ Location Philadelphia
Business Leader(s) Chris DiMarco, Anthony Balsamo
Title Founder, CEO

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