Methodology for Inner City 100
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. This year, for the first time in the list’s 16-year history, the Inner City 100 consists of 10 fast-growing businesses in 10 industry categories. Companies were ranked overall by revenue growth over the five-year period between 2009 and 2013 as well as within their respective industry categories. 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 2014 were Staples, Chevron, World Business Chicago, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, and the City of Oakland. This list was audited by the independent accounting firm Rucci, Bardaro, and Barrett, PC.