KC’s young businesses created 16,000 jobs in 2016, report says

Young businesses helped create more than 16,000 new jobs for the Kansas City metro in 2016, according to a report released this week by KCSourceLink.

First-time employers with fewer than 20 employees were responsible for 16,325 new jobs in a nine-county area around Kansas City last year, the report said. Over the past five years, those firms have created an average of 16,376 new jobs per year.

KCSourceLink is an organization that works to connect entrepreneurs to resources in the Kansas City area. It compiled the report using Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages data on employers who paid for unemployment insurance for the first time.

The report also included Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation data, which suggested that new tech firms were responsible for creating an average of 1,057 jobs per year in the area from 2012 to 2016.

Hires by young companies made up 65 percent of all new jobs and nearly 8 percent of total employment in the greater Kansas City area, the report said.

The report also looked at wages paid by new firms, finding that the companies pay below the Kansas City metro average in their first few years but surpass the area average around their third year in existence.

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