States That Are Least Supportive of Black-Owned Businesses

Amanda Postma
by Amanda Postma
Study - 2 months ago

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It comes as no surprise that many states are less than supportive when it comes to black-owned businesses. So we wanted to look into which states exactly aren’t supportive. With only 7% of businesses in America being black-owned, we found out which states are not supporting the growth of that percent.

States Least Supportive of Black-Owned Businesses

  1. South Dakota
  2. North Dakota
  3. Iowa
  4. Idaho
  5. New Hampshire
  6. Kentucky
  7. Utah
  8. Wisconsin
  9. Arkansas
  10. Nevada

All of these states have surprising low numbers surrounding their ranking from the number of black businesses to low percentages of black residents with a bachelor’s degree, but more on that in a minute. If you didn’t see your state on the list, maybe it’s because you live in a supportive community. Don’t forget to check the table below to see just how supportive, or unsupportive, your state is.

How We Determined The Least Supportive States For Black Businesses

We looked at four factors to determine the worst states for black business owners:

  • Number of black owned businesses per capita
  • The amount of people employed by black owned businesses
  • Percent of black residents with a bachelor’s degree or higher
  • The percent of black workers who work in management and business

The first factor we examined was the number of black-owned businesses per capita, using data from the Census’ Annual Business Survey.

After that, we pulled in the number of workers employed by black businesses to gauge the size
and the success of those businesses.

However, businesses don’t grow in a vacuum. We then looked at the percent of black residents with a bachelors’ degree of higher from the ACS.

Finally, using the trusty ACS data, we examined the percent of black workers who work in management and business.

Due to too small of sample size in the Small Business Survey, Wyoming, Vermont, Connecticut, and Maine were excluded from our rankings.

1. South Dakota

south dakota class=

Education: 6
Black-Owned Businesses: 33
Number of Employees: 166

South Dakota properly ranks at No. 1 as being the least supportive state for black-owned businesses as it has the lowest percentage of black residents with a bachelor’s degree or higher in the U.S. Only 6% of black residents in the state have earned a bachelor’s degree. South Dakota only supports 33 black-owned businesses, which is also one of the lowest numbers in the country.

2. North Dakota

north dakota class=

Education: 15
Black-Owned Businesses: 97
Number of Employees: 317

Of the 97 black-owned businesses in North Dakota, there are only 317 employees making North Dakota the second least supportive state. The state also has a low track record for the percentage of black residents with a bachelor’s degree or higher coming in at 14.8%.

3. Iowa

iowa class=

Education: 19
Black-Owned Businesses: 196
Number of Employees: 1,447

Iowa comes in as the third least supportive state of black-owned businesses. The state’s 196 businesses gives it the fourth lowest number in the country.

4. Idaho

idaho class=

Education: 7
Black-Owned Businesses: 77
Number of Employees: 403

Idaho isn’t much better than South Dakota with only 6.7% of black residents earning a bachelor’s degree and only 77 black-owned businesses in total. But the state’s saving grace is the number of workers that are employed at those businesses. The 403 employees number is the reason that Idaho is fourth on this list.

5. New Hampshire

new hampshire class=

Education: 18
Black-Owned Businesses: 86
Number of Employees: 1,363

New Hampshire comes in as the fifth least supportive state of black-owned businesses. The state only supports 86 black-owned businesses. While that number is fairly low amongst the country, the state does boast a whopping 18% of black residents that have received a bachelor’s degree.

6. Kentucky

kentucky class=

Education: 19
Black-Owned Businesses: 751
Number of Employees: 9,272

Kentucky comes in No. 6 least supportive of black-owned businesses. The state is definitely far away from being supportive with only 18.6 of black residents earning a bachelor’s degree or higher.

7. Utah

utah class=

Education: 21
Black-Owned Businesses: 226
Number of Employees: 1,491

Utah’s No. 7 spot of being least supportive comes as no surprise. Utah has one of the lowest numbers of black-owned businesses in the country with only 226 calling the state home.

8. Wisconsin

wisconsin class=

Education: 17
Black-Owned Businesses: 1,044
Number of Employees: 15,329

Wisconsin boasts the highest number of black-owned businesses on this list, but it’s not enough to keep it off the top 10. While the state supports 1,044 black-owned businesses, it also has one of the lowest percentages of black residents with a bachelor’s degree at 16.7%.

9. Arkansas

arkansas class=

Education: 18
Black-Owned Businesses: 700
Number of Employees: 5,029

Arkansas tops our chart of least supportive state at No. 9. While the 700 black-owned businesses that reside there is one of the higher numbers, the state’s 17.8% of black residents with a bachelor’s degree definitely hurt its ranking.

10. Nevada

nevada class=

Education: 16
Black-Owned Businesses: 768
Number of Employees: 12,002

Nevada comes in as the tenth least supportive state with only 16% of its black residents having earned a bachelor’s degree or higher. That percentage is the fourth-worst in the entire country.

Conclusion: While black-owned businesses are already few and far in-between, these 10 states don’t help much at all. With the added low education rates and number of employees, these states are the least supportive of black-owned businesses. The complete list of how supportive each state ranks is listed in the table below.

Rank State Education Black-Owned Businesses Number Of Employees
1 South Dakota 6 33 166
2 North Dakota 14 97 317
3 Iowa 18 196 1,447
4 Idaho 6 77 403
5 New Hampshire 18 86 1,363
6 Kentucky 18 751 9,272
6 Utah 20 226 1,491
8 Wisconsin 16 1,044 15,329
9 Arkansas 17 700 5,029
9 Nevada 16 768 12,002
11 Kansas 20 445 8,768
12 West Virginia 21 160 1,866
13 Nebraska 21 247 2,060
14 Rhode Island 19 287 2,579
15 South Carolina 17 2,351 22,103
16 Indiana 20 1,361 23,067
17 Montana 58 19 94
18 Oklahoma 21 817 7,508
19 Mississippi 20 1,569 17,365
20 Ohio 18 3,068 43,186
21 Alabama 20 1,808 16,180
21 Oregon 25 588 4,070
23 Minnesota 22 1,057 23,041
24 Michigan 20 2,884 58,580
24 New Mexico 24 221 2,137
26 Louisiana 18 2,637 35,874
27 Hawaii 40 116 1,269
27 Tennessee 22 2,203 25,042
29 Alaska 34 156 1,615
29 Washington 25 1,487 11,846
31 Arizona 25 1,195 11,958
32 Pennsylvania 21 3,316 36,814
33 Colorado 31 1,198 8,005
34 Missouri 20 8,185 32,737
35 Illinois 24 4,258 48,642
36 Florida 23 11,932 72,280
36 Delaware 26 517 4,371
38 North Carolina 25 5,845 57,335
39 Massachusetts 30 1,893 26,509
40 New Jersey 28 4,028 30,043
41 Texas 27 9,728 124,735
42 California 28 10,287 81,530
42 Virginia 26 5,294 59,175
44 New York 27 11,395 72,486
45 Georgia 27 8,929 83,781
46 Maryland 33 6,570 64,023
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