Texans are a do-it-ourself kind of people. So it comes as no surprise that the state ranked in the top 10 of the State Entrepreneurship Index, a measure by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln that combines data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Internal Revenue Service Statistics of Income Bulletin, the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Statistical Abstract.
In the 2011 index, Texas ranks ninth in business formation and innovation with a score of 1.54, up 25 spots from 2008, the last year of the rankings. It's not surprising that Texas did well — the state has consistently been ranked highly for its business climate by Forbes, Site Selection and CNBC.
But New York's position as the No. 1 state for entrepreneurship, with a score of 2.34, turns some current thinking on its head. Many business rankings have given high marks to southern states that focus on low taxes and minimal regulations, but in the SEI expensive northwestern states like New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey came out on top and South Carolina, Arizona and Mississippi filled out the bottom of the rankings.
Want to see proof of Houston's entrepreneurs who are coming out on top? Check out the profiles of Gilbert Joseph Perez, who turns teardown houses into modern treasures; Anita Jaisinghani, who transformed the way Houstonians think about Indian food; and trainer-to-the-sports-stars Danny Arnold.
What do you think of the rankings? What's your favorite story of a Texas entrepreneur?