Wisconsin ranks 11th in middle market company growth

Number of medium-sized firms grew 90% over past five years

Manufacturing plant

Wisconsin ranks 11th among U.S. states in growth in the number of middle market firms over the past five years, according to a new report from American Express and Dun & Bradstreet.

According to the Middle Market Power Index, Wisconsin has 4,083 middle market companies, defined as those with between $10 million and $1 billion in annual revenue. They make up 1.5 percent of Wisconsin companies, greater than the national proportion of 1 percent.

The number of middle market firms in the state grew 90.5 percent from 2011 to 2016.

Wisconsin has 270,005 companies with revenue of less than $10 million and 65 companies with more than $1 billion in revenue.

One potential reason for Wisconsin’s prominence in middle market firm growth: these firms are much more likely than average to be in the manufacturing and wholesale trade sectors, according to the report.

“Middle market firms are found in every state in the nation, yet – due in no small measure to the industrial heritage of middle market firms – some states are more likely than average to be home to middle market firms,” it says.

Though they account for just 1 percent of U.S. firms, middle market companies have contributed 53 percent of national job growth since 2011, employ 27 percent of private sector workers and the report says.

The report was based on an analysis of Dun & Bradstreet’s commercial databases of more than 19 million businesses.

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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