Oklahoma Small Business Statistics

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Last updated February 17, 2023
Written by Dmytro Kondratiev
Editor, lawyer
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The main income source in Oklahoma is the energy industry. In fact, after Texas and Pennsylvania, the state produces the largest amount of natural gas in the USA and ranks among the top five as a producer of crude oil.

In addition, it’s well-known as a hub of aerospace innovation, with thousands of companies from around the world choosing to run their business there. To give you an idea of just how big the aerospace sector of the state is, here are a few facts:

  • The largest airline maintenance base in the USA, which is basically the driver for all of the global maintenance and engineering headquarters, is located in Oklahoma;
  • The state’s aerospace industry alone generates over $11 billion in economic output every year.

However, it’s not only the industry that makes this state an attractive place for income earners but also its tax structure. Not many other states in the USA like Oklahoma offer the Small Employer Quality Jobs incentive that allows small businesses (SMEs) to get 5% of their taxable wages on the newly created job, making it the right destination for companies to settle and grow.

Key Statistics on Small Businesses in Oklahoma

  • Oklahoma is home to nearly 358.647 SMEs, representing up to 99.4% of all businesses in the state; 
  • More than 52% of the working-age population, which amounts to around 710.271 people, is employed by small enterprises;
  • The cost of living in the state, as listed in Sterling’s best places survey, is 82.2, which is lower than the US average of 100, making it a cheaper place to live in compared to other states; 
  • Export businesses comprise over 2.640 SMEs, all of which, in some way or another, have contributed to Oklahoma’s $5.6 billion worth of revenue (Census data);
  • As of the time of us writing the article, the average income of an owner of an incorporated business who works on a self-employed basis in the state reaches up to $47.000, which is double of what unincorporated businesses earn;
  • The flat 6% is the amount of income tax corporations pay on federal taxable income;
  • Returns must be filed before the federal income tax due date, which in the state is the 15th day of the 4th month after the end of the tax year;
  • According to the Community Reinvestment Act, in 2018, Oklahoma’s bank issued around 54.067 loans under $100.000, with the total value of loans amounting to around $857.1 million;
  • Any retailer who sells a minimum of $100.000 in the previous year is considered liable to collect sales tax;
  • 10.427 jobs were lost when 2.481 small businesses shut down in the fourth quarter of 2018;
  • However, during the same time, more than 13.010 jobs were offered by newly generated state startups, representing 2.716 businesses;
  • 50.271 minorities work on a self-employed basis in Oklahoma, which is 14.02% of all small businesses in the state.

Top Industries for Small Businesses in Oklahoma

Industry Company Count
Aerospace and defense industries120.000
Health care and social assistance114.160
Accommodation and food services94.885
Professional, scientific, and technical services83.252
Administrative, support, and waste management72.552
Retail trade67.474
Real estate and rental and leasing63.634
Transportation and warehousing38.884
Mining, quarrying, and oil/gas extraction29.326
Finance and insurance25.416
Educational services14.442

Small Business Formation in Oklahoma

  • Forming a corporation is a simple process that is achieved by filling the Articles of Incorporation with the Secretary of Oklahoma’s office. The filing fee is one-tenth of one percent (or $1.00 per $1.000) of the total amount of authorized capital (TAC);
  • To register an LLC, you have to file Articles of Organization and pay the state fee ($100);
  • The state law calls for every new LLC in Oklahoma to have a designated registered agent that will handle all business operations and be available during work hours at an office within the state.


  1. Oklahoma Small Business Economic Profile
  2. Cost of Living in Oklahoma
  3. 50 Interesting Facts About Oklahoma