Though the heart of America's Rust Belt is reinventing itself through the technology and sciences sector, traditional industries still have their say. Banking and insurance account for about 8 percent of Ohio's GDP, and the state's top company takes advantage of that fact. Coming in at No. 66, InsuranceAgents.com provides a comparison-shopping network to help consumers by insurance.
With the decline of Pennsylvania's once formidable manufacturing sector—particularly the coal and steel industries—has come a complementary increase in the services industry. ModCloth, an online retailer of affordable women's fashion designs, exemplifies Pennsylvania's new economy. The company lands at No. 2 on the 2010 Inc. 5000 list, growing 17,000 percent over the past three years to almost $16 million in revenue.
Tech start-ups propel Massachusetts to the No. 8 spot. Boston-based Carbonite, which provides flat-fee unlimited computer data backup to individuals and small businesses, is one of those fast-growing tech firms—and Massachusetts's highest ranking business on this year's Inc. 500, coming in at No. 9.
Inching up one spot this year from last year's showing to tie at No. 8 is Georgia. Vendormate, the company that lands at No. 25 on the list, provides software products to the city's health care and banking industries--just two of the sectors fueling growth within Atlanta's highly-diversified economy.
Illinois is still a stronghold of manufacturing and agriculture, but thanks to Chicago and its suburbs, its economy has become increasingly dominated by high-value services, such as financial trading, medicine and logistics. No. 6 company Coyote Logistics, based in the Chicago suburb Lake Forest, is a third-party logistics company that grew more than 13,000 percent in the past three years.
Florida, with an economy steered by tourism and real estate ranks No. 5 again this year. The state's highest-ranking company is a military contractor. Luke & Associates (No. 3), based in Merritt Island, is a $37 million company that provides medical care for troops and their families.
Taking advantage of their close proximity to the nation's capital, many Virginia companies such as NetWitness (No. 21), a business based in Herndon that provides cyber security services to U.S. intelligence agencies, avidly pursue with the federal government.
Coming in at No. 3 again this year, the Empire State makes another strong showing on the Inc. 500 list, driven by New York City's advertising and media sector. The top company based in New York is Yodle, an online advertising and marketing firm that works with local businesses; it topped $40 million in revenue in 2009.
Texas hosts the No. 1 company on this year's Inc. 500 list. Ambit Energy is a Dallas-based energy company that was one of many to take advantage of the state's deregulation of the energy markets in 2002, growing an astonishing 20,300 percent over the past few years. Of course, it helps that Texans consume the most energy in the nation, both per capita and as a whole.
The nation's most populous state is once again the home to the largest population of Inc. 5000 companies. Lexicon Consulting (No. 4) is one of many companies in the state's traditionally strong defense sector. The El Cajon-based company maintains mock Iraqi and Afghanistan villages, which are used for training Defense Department and military personnel in cultural immersion and awareness.