Best Cities to Start a Business in Maine

Last updated: March 19th, 2024

According to a national report, companies based in Maine received $17.8 million in venture capital funding in the first quarter of 2015, more in a single quarter than any time since the fourth quarter of 1998. With funding on the rise in local technology and telecommunications industries, Maine is poised to challenge its reputation as chiefly a tourist destination and source of lumber and agricultural products.

Portland, ME, in particular, is rapidly garnering a reputation as a business-friendly city supportive of value-driven tech startups. What Portland offers over nearby New England cities is a balance between entrepreneurial potential and overall quality of life. The offbeat city maintains a relaxed vibe, with great restaurants using locally sourced ingredients, hip clothing boutiques, and a number of well-regarded microbreweries. Positioned on the coast and a stone’s throw from many nearby hiking trails, Portland is also a great base for those who enjoy outdoor activities.

Of special interest to budding entrepreneurs is the annual Maine Startup & Create Week, a weeklong conference held in Portland where thousands of local professionals get together to share ideas, network, and hear inspiring talks given by accomplished figures from a number of industries.


Only cities with over 50,000 inhabitants are reported in the results. Some data had to be interpolated to the county level and extrapolated to all the cities in the county. We concentrated on the following metrics to obtain our ranking: Cost of livingBest state for businessUnemploymentKauffman index, and Universities.

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