Tulsa tops for young entrepreneurs

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Reported by: Ian Silver
Updated: 7/15/2013 5:23 pm Published: 7/15/2013 5:07 pm

For a number of years, there's been an effort by organizations in Tulsa to create more jobs and more opportunity by encouraging young entrepreneurs.

Forbes magazine reported Tulsa is attractive for young entrepreneurs, citing the low cost of living, easy access to resources and growth.

Matt Scovil said he could have gone anywhere for his medical research startup business, but he chose Tulsa.

"Cost of living was one thing, another was infrastructure support, and Tulsa has a fantastic infrastructure for entrepreneurship and small business right now," said Scovil.

With a low cost of living index of 88.3, commercial and industrial loans topping $125 million, and nearly 30 percent of the population with a bachelor's degree, Forbes has Tulsa on top of the list for the best city for young entrepreneurs.

"I think it shows a lot of other people both within our city and nationally that we really are a great place, that it is an easy place to do business," said Brian Paschal, the executive director at The Forge. The Forge helps startup companies get on their feet.

He says Tulsa needs bigger investments, better collaboration within the business community and more people with a higher education.

"Getting the word out that we are a great place to do business because we need to build that critical mass of smart people building ideas and working together," said Paschal.

City leaders said they're continuing to pour resources into the young entrepreneurship programs, but Scovil wants to see more of Tulsa's business veterans sharing their expertise.

"If there's a way, even if it's just mentorship, even if it's not funding, mentorship from people that have so much business experience in those organizations that could come and help people like us navigate early business," said Scovil.

The city spends $45,000 on Tulsa's annual Global Entrepreneurship Week, where business professionals from all over the world host workshops and seminars.

Another great feature about Tulsa's business community.

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