Grand Rapids surly is The Right Place! We are The Right Place, for the second consecutive year, because Area Development Magazine has ranked the Grand Rapids-Wyoming MSA as the third best area in the country for businesses to prosper. The sixth annual “Leading Locations” study was published on Area Development’s website this week.

Grand Rapids ranked only behind San Francisco and Napa, California in this year’s poll. In 2015, Grand Rapids ranked behind only Denver and Houston. This year’s study ranked 394 MSA’s whereas the 2015 study ranked 373 MSA’s.

Grand Rapids ranked #127 in 2013, #42 in 2014, and #3 in 2015.

This number is very impressive considering this is only Grand Rapids’ second year in the “big city” category, which is any MSA with populations of 600,000 or more.

Founded in 1965, Area Development Magazine is considered the leading executive magazine covering corporate site selection and relocation. Area Development is published quarterly with circulation to 44,000 executives and site location professionals.

Now in its sixth year, the study uses objective data from government agencies and industry organizations.

Area Development ranked 394 MSAs across several economic and work force indicators. These indicators were pulled from seven (7) data sets (sub-categories) originating from four sources: the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Census American Community Survey and Moody’s Analytics.

“Grand Rapids is flexing its economic strength with a number three ranking,” said Birgit Klohs, President and CEO, The Right Place, Inc. “This ranking turned a lot of heads when we jumped thirty-nine spots last year, and now we’re getting a lot of looks by maintaining a top three position. These third-party data-driven studies really validate the growth we are experiencing throughout the region and increases the overall perception of West Michigan as a global destination for business success.”

According to Geraldine Gambale, editor of Area Development, “These Leading Locations are MSAs that have invested in themselves to create skilled workforces and pro-business environments. Many of these MSAs have strong educational assets and they’ve attracted the talented individuals that forward-looking companies need.”

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