Irvine: California’s best city to start a business

by Bryan Starr

President and CEO, Greater Irvine Chamber

Irvine has always been a great place to start a business.

A study by WalletHub, a national financial resource website, just confirmed it’s the best place in California to launch an entrepreneurial dream.

It makes sense.

The survey found Irvine has the most educated workforce in the nation. More than 72% hold a bachelor’s degree while 32% hold a master’s degree or higher, No. 1 and No. 2 in the nation, respectively.

The city – through its Master Plan – has also fostered the most dynamic, active and healthy business climates I’ve seen.

One-third of Fortune 500 companies have a presence in Irvine, most in the Spectrum District. Global giants like Google, Taco Bell, BlackBerry, Mazda and Amazon can be seen on signs and tops of buildings.

Our city is also a magnet for startups and new investment. Ideas are hatched and grown at University Research Park, leveraging access to UCIrvine and its talent.

In Irvine, companies also thrive off one another. Take life sciences as an example. Edwards Lifesciences and Allergan – two global leaders headquartered in Irvine – have spawned hundreds of other smaller companies to serve and support the industry.

I’ve traveled the globe promoting Irvine’s strength to start or relocate a business. CEOs are amazed by what we show them, and many have moved or grown their businesses here as a result.

It’s good to see Irvine get the ranking it deserves.