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Bellevue named top place to live, launch business

Fortune Small Business (FSB) has named Bellevue the best place (out of 100) in the nation to live and launch a business.

FSB chose Bellevue over others in the top 10 including Georgetown, Texas; Buford, Ga.; Marina del Rey, Calif.; Bethesda, Md.; Portland, Ore.; Denver, Colo.; Charlotte, N.C.; Fort Worth, Texas, and Franklin, Maine.

“This is well-deserved recognition for a dynamic community that thinks entrepreneurially at all levels, and never loses sight of quality of life,” said Chris Falco, Chair of the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce board of directors.

In addition to Bellevue’s talented workforce and growing downtown, FSB reported “huge corporations exist symbiotically with startups, a booming downtown abuts healthy residential neighborhoods, and the rising skyline is tempered by an abundance of parks, as well as lakeside and mountain views. Easy airport access and a highly skilled workforce make Bellevue an attractive option for startups looking to break big, [and] Bellevue’s excellent healthcare and schools are key attractions for relocating families.”

“On behalf of the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce, we are thrilled that Fortune Small Business has selected Bellevue as the top city to live and launch a business. Special thanks to the business and civic leaders who provided compelling information and helped showcase all of the amenities Bellevue has to offer entrepreneurs and residents,” said Betty Nokes, President & CEO, Bellevue Chamber of Commerce.

FSB features General Microsystems CEO and Bellevue Chamber Board member, Earl Overstreet II, in its report. “We do have a glittering downtown now,” Overstreet told FSB, “but it’s the diversity that attracts entrepreneurs like me.”

How the 100 Best were chosen: FSB ranked 296 Census-designated metro areas by business friendliness (Launching Score, % New Businesses) and lifestyle offerings (Living Score). Then, through reporting, picked the town within each of the top 100 metro areas that best blends business and pleasure.

For more information visit www.money.cnn.com/magazines/fsb/bestplaces/2008.

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