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Indians among immigrant entrepreneurs flocking to Georgia

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February 2007
Indians among immigrant entrepreneurs flocking to Georgia

Georgia accounts for 4 percent of the engineering and technology companies founded by Indian immigrants in the U.S., as per a new study ("America's New Immigrant Entrepreneurs") by Duke-based Vivek Wadhwa and his team. It's a long way from California's 26 percent, but Georgia's share continues to grow and it's already respectable when compared to many other states. New Jersey (12 percent), Virginia (7 percent) and Michigan (7 percent) come after California, while Texas and Florida (5 percent each) are just ahead of Georgia. Overall, unsurprisingly, immigrants from India tend to focus on software (46 percent) and innovation/manufacturing-related services (44 percent). Computers/communications, bioscience, environmental and semiconductors make up the rest. Indian immigrants account for 34 percent of the companies founded in software. Their share in this category is the highest by far, with the Brits coming in second at 9 percent. Indians, overall, founded 26 percent of the immigrant-established firms included in this study. They lead in the innovation/manufacturing-related sector, too, accounting for 24 percent of the firms founded.

Georgia, particularly metro Atlanta, remains a magnet for immigrants. The study, for instance, found that 30 percent of all engineering and technology companies established in Georgia had at least one key founder who was foreign-born. Only California (39 percent) and New Jersey (38 percent) had higher percentages. Immigrants, in general, form 40 percent of the people moving to Georgia. Over the past half-decade, as per census figures, Atlanta's Asian population grew by 46 percent (the second fastest after Las Vegas). And at 27 percent, it was Indians who made up the largest portion of the rise.


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