CNBC ranks Iowa 4th in U.S. for business - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

CNBC ranks Iowa 4th in U.S. for business

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WATERLOO (KWWL) - Iowans know the economic strength of their state.

Now that a study puts Iowa's economy among the top in the country, the whole nation knows it, too.

CNBC released it's yearly "America's Top States for Business" study.

Coming in at number four is Iowa thanks to the low cost of doing business.

Colorado is number three because of its economy.

Texas comes in second due to transportation and infrastructure and Virginia received the highest rank because of business friendliness.

Lowest on CNBC's list?

Rhode Island, Hawaii, and Alaska.

Iowa is tops in the country in the cost of doing busines, fourth in its economy.

Business and economic leaders say it's something they've known for a long time and are glad to see the state getting high marks.

Bob Hellman has owned his Waterloo public relations firm for more than 40 years.

While his business is global, he says Iowa is the right place to call home.

"Via the computer and the internet and so forth, we're right next door, no matter where the client is," said Hellman.

While Hellman's business is run out of an old church in Waterloo, in Cedar Falls, Target has built massive distribution centers.

It built in Cedar Falls due to Iowa's business climate and workforce, a workforce upwards of 500 employees.

"When you look to locate a distribution center, you look for accessability to transportation and accessability to labor and we've got both of those here. We're extremely impressed with the labor here," said Target Distribution Center GM Zach Shimp.

"It's one of those items we want to include in context in our sales approach, our marketing approach to businesses," said Cedar Valley Alliance executive director Steve Dust. Dust says the CNBC ranking is another feather in Iowa's economic development cap.

"Even though we know things are good in Iowa, one of the challenges we have to overcome is simply identifying the location of Iowa when we go to one coast or another or majore metropolitan areas so this kind of focused attention on Iowa as a great place to do business helps the Cedar Valley in our marketing immensely," said Dust.

Hellman says he's found Iowans are savvy business people.

"Instinctively, I think Iowans are much more aggressive. We may have the costume of laid back people but we tend to be aggressive and go out and get the business," said Hellman.

Still, the CNBC survey shows Iowa has some work to do to be better.

The state ranks 31st in transportation and infrastructure - due to air and rail issues and it ranks 34th in access to capital.

To see the full report, click here.

Online Reporter: Bob Waters

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