California Dreamin’: How the Golden State Can Provide Golden Opportunities for Your BusinessIf you’re an entrepreneur, you know that when setting out on a small business venture, there are many factors you must consider. What will be the size and scale of the company? How will you get initial funding to jump start their project? Who will you choose to partner with?

Perhaps the most significant of all these very fundamental questions is that of location: where will you start your business? The location of your business is the foundation upon which the answers to all of the aforementioned questions are built. “Location, location, location” is the saying so often associated with the real estate industry—and it applies well to business also.

Another thing that the real estate industry and the small business start up industry have in common is their success in the state of California. Aside from luscious peaches and sparkling beaches, there are a number of important reasons why starting a business in California is the one of the best decisions a young entrepreneur can make.

Human Capital

Succeeding as a small business is all about the people you surround yourself with. It starts with an intelligent and trusted inner circle that can help you optimize your business strategy. You also need a solid group of highly-educated – and preferably young – employees. People with ideas, creativity, and the ability to work on an entry-level salary are ideal candidates for a business in its developing stages.

Where do you find these people? At top-tier universities. Of the top business schools in the country, 3 in the top 15 alone are located in California—and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Proximity to Innovation

Another obvious advantage to starting a small business in California—and particularly in Silicon Valley or the Bay Area—will be your proximity to like minded entrepreneurs looking for people to connect with. Connections and the power of combined brainpower are essential to success in the start up community, and in California you have the best opportunity to take advantage of the businessmen and women around you.

Proven Business Success in the State

As you can see, the education and business focus of certain areas of California make it an ideal place to start a business. But one of the biggest concerns for small business owners in the U.S. is the extent to which the federal government will inhibit their ability to grow due to a repressive tax policy. Granted, California is not known for being particularly generous in regards to their tax policy on businesses, but that’s beginning to change. Recent legislation passed by Governor Jerry Brown is reversing some of the old trends of exorbitant tax policy in the state, and the incredible success of businesses in the Bay Area/Silicon Valley regions should be proof positive of the ability of business to work with government, to the mutual benefit of both.

California has long held onto a certain aesthetic appeal that has attracted incomers for generations—and in today’s world of ubiquitous small business ventures, its highly-educated population and abundant opportunity ensure that this appeal will not fade in the age of the entrepreneur.

Marianne S. Ross is a business and finance blogger writing on behalf of Wallace & Associates APC. You can reach her by email at

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