3. New Mexico
entrepreneurial states new mexico 2
New super-resolution imaging technology developed in Sandia National Labs allows researchers to see cell-level activity in unprecedented detail.
2012 startup rate: 520 per 100,000 adults

New Mexico is enjoying a flurry of startup activity lately.

Small businesses have long been key to the state's well-being. "New Mexico doesn't have a lot of manufacturing or other large industries, so people here have traditionally resorted to starting their own business," said Beverlee McClure, president and CEO of New Mexico's Association of Commerce & Industry.

Many young technology and biotech companies launch their ideas through two federally funded R&D labs here -- Sandia National Laboratories and the Los Alamos National Laboratory. They also find support through incubators based in the University of New Mexico and other schools.

There's more startup capital available in the state since the recession ended, said McClure. And fledgling entrepreneurs can find mentors among a growing community of retired CEOs who have relocated to the state, said McClure.

One downside for startups here: Taxes on property, personal and business income are relatively high.


Source: 2013 Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity, published by the Kauffman Foundation. The 2012 startup rate for each state is based on a yearly national survey of about half a million people -- adults aged 20 to 64 who start a business each month with 15 or more hours worked. In Montana, for example, Kauffman found that 530 of every 100,000 adults started businesses in 2012.
- Last updated June 20 2013 11:48 AM ET
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