Bowling Green is a Business Hot Spot

By: Tamara Evans
By: Tamara Evans

Bowling Green is ranked above all other Kentucky cities as being the hottest city for entrepreneurs.

Last year Inc. magazine ranked Bowling Green as the 116th best city for businesses and entrepreneurs. This year's ranking jumped to 49th, beating all other ranked cities in the state.

"To me, Bowling Green's got a lot to offer," Rob Saling said.

Saling works for NorthWest Nuclear, a small business located in Western Kentucky University's Small Business Accelerator and Center for Research and Development.

"We do government contracts for nuclear bomb detection, is what we're currently working on," Saling said.

Saling said the Bowling Green area was a great place for this business to get started. They came here as an arrangement with WKU's Applied Physics Institute.

Western Kentucky University is why some say other businesses are starting to come to the area. Take a look at Accelerator's website by clicking here.

"WKU is growing at a rapid pace," Buddy Steen said.

Steen is the director of the Center for Research and Development. It's a place where science and technology companies can start up until they're ready to expand into the community.

He said Bowling Green's ranking as a hot spot for businesses isn't surprising, especially with the numbers he's seen.

"We have experienced over the past year and a half 272 percent job growth in the small business accelerator program here," Steen said.

He said there are a number of reasons why many businesses come to Bowling Green.

"For a company, we look and act from a workforce standpoint like a Nashville, or Louisville, or Lexington, but our standard of living and safety is still small town and that's a good thing," Steen said.

It's one reason why Saling said NorthWest Nuclear decided on this area.

"You don't have to necessarily be in some of the larger cities to get a lot done. Communications have just made a lot of that possible," Saling said.

The list of Business Boomtowns will be featured in Inc. magazine's May issue, but you can go ahead and view it by clicking here.

To see the cities who made this list and their change in rank from last year, click here.

Governor Ernie Fletcher was also on hand at the WKU's Center for Research and Development on April 25, 2007, to present a check from the state to help further the center's services.

Governor Fletcher presented a $150,000 check to the Center for Research and Development.

The center is located in the old Bowling Green mall and has brought hundreds of businesses to the area.

Governor Fletcher said with the loss we've seen in manufacturing jobs in the past our ability to compete with other states when it comes to businesses is now based on technology.

"And it's developed in areas like this, so these small companies may produce processes or machines that are necessary to make sure we stay competitive in the manufacturing sector as well," Fletcher said.


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