Demographic Data

Small Business
Is Big Business
In Central Vermont

The wooded hills of Central Vermont disguise the
tremendous number of businesses they contain.

There are more than 2,600 employers in the Central Vermont region, according to the Department of Employment and Training. The Department reported 2,672 employers subject to the Vermont Unemployment Insurance law in 2008. In addition, there are an estimated 2,500 people who are self-employed and not subject to the insurance law.

Seven of Central Vermont’s 23 cities and towns have more than 100 employers. Montpelier has the greatest number of employers, Barre is second. Although not the most populated city in the region, Montpelier has by far the most jobs. Its employers provide 9,135 jobs. Montpelier’s covered firms average just under 14 employees each; Barre’s firms average 11.

Employers in Berlin have the highest average number of employees at 23 each.The number of employers and the number of self-employed helps insulate the region from dramatic economic shifts. Small business is Central Vermont’s largest employer.The small business owner or self-employed person can implement change immediately. There are no proposals to the board, no division meetings, and no memos to departments ­ just get the staff into the office and tell them the new plan.The diversity of firms is a buffer from damage by a single industry, and the very small sizes mean a quick reaction to shifts in the economy.

Central Vermont employers average just over a dozen people per company. This is a vital economic strength. Small businesses tend to be able to react to changing market conditions much more rapidly than larger companies. In today’s business environment, that is a significant advantage.

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