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Not all startup companies are created equal. Although both innovation-driven enterprises (IDEs) and traditional small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can provide valuable products and services and create jobs, IDEs – startups focused on addressing global markets based on technological, process or business model innovation – can potentially create hundreds or even thousands of high-skill jobs if they succeed.
As the unemployment rate fell in 2012, another economic indicator dropped too: the overall business creation rate. According to the annual Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity, the 2012 rate declined slightly from 0.32 percent of American adults per month starting businesses in 2011 to 0.30 percent in 2012.
In what some might consider an ironic twist, technology seems to play a lesser role in building a local entrepreneurial community for startups than good old-fashioned face-time and word of mouth.
How does a newly formed nonprofit organization tasked with helping entrepreneurs across America effectively serve startups that are in different places, in different industries and with wildly different needs? Region by region, is the central lesson this white paper.