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100 Fastest-Growing Inner City Businesses

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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.

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).

See our methodology and credits


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  3. 2015 Revenues ($M)
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Three Brothers Bakery

Courtesy of Three Brothers Bakery

As co-owners of Three Brothers Bakery, Janice and Bobby Jucker live at the vibrant intersection of old and new. The history of their Houston-based company dates back to Bobby’s great-great-grandfather’s bakery in 19th-century Poland. It continued with his father and two uncles, Holocaust survivors who moved to Texas after World War II and founded the first Three Brothers Bakery store. Since that time, Three Brothers Bakery has developed longstanding relationships not only with single customers, but with entire families, in some cases providing wedding cakes for three generations of a Houston family. Bobby and Janice have worked to leverage cutting-edge communications—from Pinterest to blogging and public relations analytics—to get the word out about their family tradition.

Company Information

Five-Year Growth Rate (%) 170%
2015 Revenues ($M) $4.75
HQ Location Houston, TX
Business Leader(s) Janice Jucker
Title President and Co-Owner

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