A new study says New Bern is one of the best places to start a business in North Carolina.
The survey is based on 2014 Census Data and ranks cities in the Tar Heel state on two key components, business climate, which includes the annual income of the business and the health of the local economy, which looks at factors like the median annual income of employees and the unemployment rate in the city.
“We couldn’t think of a better place to go,” said Troy Walker.
Walker and his wife took over Bear City Fudge in April. They remodeled the whole store and brought in new inventory. Walker says since the take-over, business has been booming.
“We’ve been up anywhere between 30 and 40 percent, year over year numbers, beyond our expectations to be honest, we had aggressive goals but we beat those.”
The study, released by Nerd-Wallet, One of CNN-Money’s top 20 best money sites says tourism is key to business’ success.
“One of the biggest reasons we found here again was that it was very high in tourism, so we knew that there was going to be a steady stream of people and also climate, we only get really 6 weeks that are crummy weather and beyond that we see people coming from all over the country.”
Midtown Olive Oil on Middle Street agrees.
“I do think it’s a great place to open a business in the small town of New Bern. We get a lot of foot traffic and loyal and repeat customers,” said Ross Sinfield.
New Bern is the birthplace of one of the most recognizable businesses in the world, Pepsi. With a population of over 28,000 people, there are 3,000 businesses in the city.Business is thriving, and some people are developing more businesses that they plan to open soon.
“We found a niche that no one else is serving right now and were opening a new place hopefully within the next couple of months,” explained Walker.
Other cities in the east that made the list for best places to start a business are Morehead City, Washington and Greenville.