Charleston Harbor & Fort SumterCharleston Harbor & Fort Sumter

While Charleston frequently receives recognition as a top national and global visitor destination in the world, it has developed a reputation as a burgeoning tech and creative hub, largely driven by the twenty and thirty somethings who place a premium on place and livability.

At the Charleston Digital Corridor, our recipe is simple – take one of the best business climates in the country, leverage all relevant resources and then, layer on a set of targeted, value-oriented services to help tech businesses thrive. Charleston, first settled in the late 1600s, is experiencing a twenty-first century renaissance. Spend a weekend here and you will be hooked. 

Need assistance? Contact Executive Director Ernest Andrade, your personal "Business Concierge."

  • Top 20 Metro for First Fundings in 2014

    SOURCE: Brookings Institute, January 2015

    Charleston ranked #12 in the country for first fundings - This rank takes into account the population of the region and normalizes it against the nation as a whole.

  • 2014 Best Performing Cities

    SOURCE: Milken Institute, January 2015

    Nationally, over a five year period Charleston's relative high-tech GDP growth moved up from #5 to #4.

  • South Carolina ranked #9 out of the Top 10 Pro-Business States in the US

    SOURCE: Pollina Corporate, July 2014

    Pollina's Corporate's annual 50-state ranking indicates how well each state has positioned itself to retain and create jobs; in the 2014 report, South Carolina ranked #9 out of the Top 10 Pro-Business states.

  • #1 Travel destination in North America, #2 in the World

    SOURCE: Travel + Leisure, June 2014

    Charleston took home Travel & Leisure's top honor for favorite North American travel destination and 2nd best in the world due to its inviting hotels, excellent dining, and unique historical attractions.

  • Charleston named in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in US Metro Areas Report

    SOURCE: Brookings Institute, June 2014

    In a report on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in US Metro Areas, Charleston ranked #9 for Metro Areas in which Foreign Owned Enterprises (FOEs) account for the largest share of private employment.

  • Leading Locations for 2014: The MSAs with Strongest Prime Work Force Growth

    SOURCE: Area Development, June 2014

    Among the 379 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) surveyed across the United States, Charleston ranked 22 among the "Leading Locations for 2014" that are poised to capitalize on economic and work force growth.

  • Charleston ranked among 2014 Best Cities for Job Growth

    SOURCE: New Geography, May 2014

    Five measures of growth were used to rank 398 metro areas across the United States; Charleston ranked #17 among the 92 "midsize" (ranging from 150,000 to 450,000 jobs) best cities for job growth.

  • Charleston #2 of America’s Most Exciting Mid-Size Cities

    SOURCE: Movoto Real Estate, March 2014

    Of the 117 cities surveyed across the United States, Charleston ranked #2 of the Most Exciting Mid-sized Cities (defined as 120,000 to 210,000 residents). Ranking criteria ranged widely from the number of live music venues per capita, to the number of parks, to the percentage of young residents aged 20 to 34.

  • South Carolina #4 Best State to Achieve the American Dream of Economic Prosperity

    SOURCE: Business Climate Blog, March 2014

    South Carolina ranked among the Top 10 states in the US that have experienced success in creating conditions that enable residents to achieve their "American Dream", particularly in regards to areas such as job environment, job benefits, material prosperity and financial security.

  • Charleston ranked one of the Best-Performing Cities 2013

    SOURCE: Milken Institute, December 2013

    Charleston ranked #11 in the Best-Performing Cities index, which shows where jobs are being created and sustained in metro areas across the U.S (particularly in measures of job, wage, and technology performance).

  • Charleston Included in "Most Active" Map of Tech Hubs in the US

    SOURCE: State Tech Magazine, November 2013

    In the feature "Silicon America", Charleston was named as one of the "most active" IT and innovation areas in a map of tech hubs across the United States.

  • South Carolina #8 Best State for doing Business

    SOURCE: Chief Executive, May 2013

    In Chief Executive’s ninth annual survey of CEO opinions of "Best" and "Worst States" in which to do business, South Carolina was ranked #8 Best State (out of the 50 US states) for doing business.

  • Charleston ranked #3 out of Top 30 Best Cities for Young Entrepreneurs 2013

    SOURCE: Under30CEO, March 2013

    Out of 30 cities in the United States, Charleston was voted #3 of the Best Cities for a new company to open shop based on local resources, culture, atmosphere and overall appeal to young entrepreneurs.

  • Charleston ranked #9 Best-Performing Cities of 2012

    SOURCE: Milken Institute , January 2013

    Charleston was ranked #9 out of the 25 Top large metro areas for the 2012 Best-Performing Cities index, which includes measures of job, wage, and technology performance to rank the nation's 200 large metropolitan areas and 179 smaller metro areas.

  • Charleston ranks #9 for Job recovery among US metro areas

    SOURCE: Brookings Institute December 2012

    The Charleston region outpaced major metros such as Dallas, New York and San Francisco in employment, output (GDP) and housing growth to achieve a #9 ranking for job recovery among the 100 largest U.S. metro areas.

  • Charleston ranked among Top 10 Cities with Cleanest Air

    SOURCE: CNN Health, October 2012

    The Honeywell AirGenius Awards judged 100 U.S. cities based on airborne pollen levels, particulate air pollution and smoking regulations; Charleston ranked #9 out of the Top 10 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the US.

  • Best Downtowns in US

    SOURCE: Livability, October 2012

    Charleston ranked #2 among 10 Best Downtowns in US, as a place that offers excellent amenities and a high quality of life.

  • Charleston Voted #1 City in the World

    SOURCE: Conde Nast Traveler, October 2012

    While Charleston has claimed honors as being voted the top city in the US for two years in a row (2011, 2012), it has also been ranked as the #1 destination of the "World's Great Cities" by Conde Nast Traveler's readers.

  • Charleston #2 Top State for Doing Business 2012

    SOURCE: Area Development, September 2012

    South Carolina's strong business and labor climate propelled the Palmetto State to the #2 overall spot in the Top States for Doing Business Index, up from a fourth ranking in 2011.

  • 2012 Best Communities for Young People

    SOURCE: America's Promise Alliance, September 2012

    Charleston was recognized among the "100 Best Communities for Young People" in the United States, a competition that spotlights communities that demonstrate a cross sector support and lasting commitment to youth development through innovative programs and services throughout the community.

  • 100 Leading Locations for 2012

    SOURCE: Area Development, July 2012

    Charleston ranked 2nd among Area Development’s Top 20 South-Atlantic Cities, as one of the 100 "Leading Locations" across the US.

  • Charleston #4 Best City For Jobs This Summer

    SOURCE: Forbes , June 2012

    In a period when the national unemployment rate had just grown to 8.2%, this survey indicates the Best and Worst Cities for getting a job in the summer of 2012. Charleston ranked #4 nationally, with a net employment outlook of 24%.

  • Best-Performing Cities 2011

    SOURCE: Milken Institute, December 2011

    Charleston ranked #11 among the Top 25 Large Metro areas of the 2011 Best-Performing cities Index.

  • 2011 Conde Nast Traveler Reader's Choice Award

    SOURCE: Conde Nast Traveler, October 2011

    Charleston was voted the #1 Best City in the World by Conde Nast Traveler Reader's Choice Award.

  • Charleston Among Select US Cities To See "Brain Gain" in Educational Attainment

    SOURCE: Brookings Institute, September 2011

    Charleston is included among a list of US cities experiencing "Brain Gain" in regards to increased educational attainment in metropolitan areas.

  • Best Towns of 2011

    SOURCE: Outside Magazine, August 2011

    Charleston was voted one of the 19 Best Towns (to visit and live) in the US, based on factors such as affordable homes, solid job prospects, and vibrant nightlife.

  • 2011 Best Cities for Job Growth

    SOURCE: New Geography, May 2011

    Charleston was ranked #8 out of 90 Medium-sized Best US Cities for Job Growth, a measurement that emphasizes the robustness of a region's growth both recently and over time.

  • Charleston Highly ranked in Small Business Vitality Scores 2011

    SOURCE: The Business Journals, April 2011

    Charleston came in 3rd on a list of the nation’s 100 largest metropolitan areas that offer the best climates for small businesses.

  • Charleston Named One of America's Favorite Cities

    SOURCE: Travel and Leisure, November 2010

    Charleston was named one of America's Favorite Cities out of the 35 US cities ranked by residents and visitors for their culture, shopping, restaurants, nightlife.

  • 2010 Small Business Vitality Scores

    SOURCE: Upstart Business Journal, January 2010

    Based on population, employment and small business growth, Charleston is named #4 of the most vibrant US metropolitan areas.

  • World's Smartest Cities

    SOURCE: Forbes, December 2009

    Charleston Ranked #8 for strong infrastructure, attractive economy and savvy urban planning

  • Charleston Ranked a "Top City"

    SOURCE: Lonely Planet, December 2009

    Lonely Plant, an international tourism guide, has named Charleston one of the “Top Cities to go to in 2010.”

  • Charleston Ranked one of the 10 best small "Adventure Burgs"

    SOURCE: Outside Magazine, August 2009

    Chucktown is affordable (median home price, $235,000) and small (pop. 110,000) but comes with the vitality of a metropolis, thanks to its kaleidoscopic heritage and a happening downtown.

  • Progressive Environmental Stewardship & Sustainable Growth

    Charleston ranked 11th among 405 small cities as a sustainable community - one that can continue in a healthy way into an uncertain future.

  • Best Cities For Technology Jobs

    SOURCE: Forbes, June 2009

    Charleston is ranked #7 Best City for Growth in Technology Jobs

  • Most Livable Cities in America

    SOURCE: US Conference of Mayors, June 2009

    Charleston is recognized as the #1 most livable city in the US.

  • Next Cities: Best Places to Live & Work for Young Professionals

    SOURCE: Next Generation Consulting, June 2009

    Charleston is ranked # 2 among cities with 100,000 to 200,000 population

  • America’s Strongest Housing Markets

    SOURCE: Forbes, January 2009

    Charleston is ranked among the top 25 best housing markets in the US.

  • 2008 Best Performing Cities: Where America’s Jobs Are Created

    SOURCE: Milken Institute, September 2008

    Charleston is ranked #10 for job creation among mid-sized metros.

  • The Best Cities for Doing Business

    SOURCE:, August 2008

    Charleston is ranked #6 best places for business among 30 mid-sized cities

  • 50 Next Great Adventure Towns

    SOURCE: National Geographic, August 2008

    Charleston is named one of "the 50 next great adventure towns"

  • Top Arts Destinations

    SOURCE: American Style Magazine, June 2008

    Charleston is ranked #6 among the nation's mid-size cities.

  • America's Best High Schools

    SOURCE: US News & World Report, December 2007

    Charleston County’s Academic Magnet High School Ranks 27th in the Nation

  • Top 10 Cities U.S. and Canada

    SOURCE: Travel + Leisure, August 2007

    Charleston is listed among the 10 best destinations in North America

  • The Best Cities for Doing Business

    SOURCE:, May 2007

    Charleston recognized as one of the Top 20 Midsize Cities in the US.

  • Small Business Survival Index 2006

    South Carolina ranks 11th among entrepreneur-friendly states

  • Hot Spots for Entrepreneurs

    SOURCE: Entrepreneur, November 2006

    Charleston metro area ranked #2 among top mid-size metros and the State of South Carolina ranked#5 nationally.

  • Five-Star Knowledge Worker Metros

    SOURCE: Expansion Management, May 2006

    Charleston metro area among top 20 percent in the US.

  • Top U.S. Cities for Doing Business

    SOURCE:, May 2006

    Charleston region ranked #12 among midsize metros in the US.

  • Best Performing Cities : Where America's Jobs Are Created

    SOURCE: Milken Insitute, May 2006

    Charleston region listed among top 25 largest metros in the US.

  • Hot Cities for Entrepreneurs

    SOURCE: Entrepreneur Magazine, October 2005

    Charleston metro area ranked #4 among top mid-size metros.

  • New American Dream Towns

    SOURCE: Outside Magazine, August 2005

    Charleston is ranked among top 10 cities in the US.

  • America's Most Unwired Cities

    SOURCE:, June 2005

    Charleston metro area ranked #32 in the US.

  • Best Places for Business and Careers

    SOURCE: Forbes, May 2005

    Charleston metro area listed among top 50 in the US.

  • Technopolis Found: Top Tech Cities

    SOURCE: Popular Science, February 2005

    Charleston ranked #40 out of the Top 50 in the US.