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District Start-Ups Grow Fastest in Nation

Kim Hart

Venture capital-backed companies in Washington, D.C., showed the fastest revenue growth in the country between 2003 and 2005, according to a study released today by the National Venture Capital Association.

Compared to other states, District-based companies that received venture capital generated relatively low revenues, with $2.2 billion in 2005. But that number represents a 25 percent growth rate over the two years.

Venture-backed companies in Virginia posted revenues of $82.9 billion, reflecting 9.2 percent growth in 2005. Maryland firms posted $30.6 billion, with revenue growth of 4.6 percent.

Mark Heesen, president of the Arlington-based NVCA, said the District's high growth is probably a reflection of the quick rise of companies based there.

Blackboard Inc., for example, is known as one of the District's top venture capital success stories. The firm, which sells educational software, last month reported $51.4 million in revenues for its fourth quarter--a 44 percent increase over the same period in 2005. The company's income, however, dipped after it acquired WebCT last year.

The study looked at the number of jobs and levels of revenue generated by about 23,500 venture-backed companies. Nationwide, U.S. companies that received venture capital from 1970 to 2005 generated 10 million jobs and $2.1 trillion in revenues in 2005, outpacing businesses that were not funded by venture capital cash. FedEx, Cisco, Starbucks, Google, eBay and Apple are among the well-known companies that received venture capital financing.

National Revenues at Venture-backed Companies in 2005
1. California, $506.8 billion
2. Texas, $274 billion
3. Washington, $127.4 billion
4. Pennsylvania, $112.8 billion
5. Massachusetts, $111.7 billion
6. Georgia, $109.2 billion
7. New York, $87.4 billion
8. Virginia, 82.9 billion
9. Tennessee, $71.6 billion
10. Florida, $68.9 billion
11. Minnesota, $65 billion
12. Connecticut, $53.9 billion
13. New Jersey, $48.1 billion
14. Illinois, $36.8 billion
15. Maryland, $30.6 billion

By Kim Hart  |  March 21, 2007; 3:53 PM ET  | Category:  Kim Hart
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