Doing Business in Arkansas
Why Pick Arkansas?
Many businesses have started, matured, or expanded to the Natural State. The combination of attractive business tax and financing incentives, low unemployment rate (4.9%), and employment growing at 2.5% make it an attractive location. In fact, there are over 91,000 state businesses in operation supported by a workforce of over 1.7M workers. There are other indications that growth is abound including $6.9B in nonresidential construction (ranked #1 in the nation), and $2.2B in residential construction (ranked #9 in the nation). While conditions appear favorable there are other important details about the business environment that should be considered. To help business owners and managers, a brief overview of doing business in Arkansas is included below.
Arkansas Economic Profile
The Arkansas economy is quite diverse and is bolstered by companies across several industries. While known for the beautiful landscape and outdoor scenery, there are several high-performing industries including healthcare, manufacturing, food processing, construction, and professional/technical services. Business ownership is diverse with 43.1% of companies women-owned, 5.6% veteran-owned, and 20.6% owned by racial minorities. Beyond this, Arkansas was also ranked the #1 state for inbound movers in 2021 and #2 as the most pandemic-proof for small businesses. In other words, there is more to Arkansas than meets the eye.
Arkansas Business Incentives
The state offers several incentives designed to capture the attention of companies and organizations looking to open a location, expand operations, or relocate. The available programs include those designed to spur new job creation to drive investment in targeted industries. There are four job-related incentives including Advantage Arkansas, ArkPlus, Create Rebate, and various infrastructure grants. Targeted industry incentives include a payroll income tax credit, payroll tax rebate, and sales and use tax refunds as well. Finally, the state offers a research & development (R&D) tax credit for qualifying innovation activities.
Arkansas Business Resources
Below is a list of business resources to guide those new to Arkansas and others who have been operating here for years.