COLUMBUS, OHIO – Many middle market companies are returning to pre-pandemic performance levels and predicting continued growth as the ongoing recovery of the middle market becomes more extensive. However, new challenges, such as supply chain disruption and finding skilled workers, have emerged as companies continue to evolve and respond to the pandemic.

Data from the 2021 Year-End Middle Market Indicator, released today by the National Center for the Middle Market (NCMM), reveals that year-over-year growth surged to 12.3%, a significant change from 8% growth reported in July 2021. A year ago, middle market companies reported a decline of -1.2% year-over-year revenue growth.

Along with record revenue growth, hiring at middle market companies has also been on the rise at a reported rate of 10.8%. Workforces have grown by 10% or more at nearly half (43%) of middle market companies. A year ago, only 15% of company workforces were increasing at the same rate.

“Building on the strong performance reported last summer, the middle market continues on a path of significant growth,” said NCMM Managing Director Doug Farren. “The good news is this continuation of recovery appears to be more universal, as a majority of middle market companies are saying they are back to pre-pandemic levels of performance. In addition, optimism about the future remains strong.”

The promising forecast from middle market executives is reflected in projected revenue growth — 9.9% for the next 12 months. Another positive data point shows that confidence in the economy continues to rebound to pre-pandemic levels. Slowly, middle market firms are becoming more comfortable with investing versus saving, with 60% of companies saying they would be more likely to invest in areas such as information technology, personnel and capital expenditures rather than save.

While many companies have adapted and are optimistic for the future, the pandemic still represents potential concern. Supply chains remain the area most disrupted with 47% of middle market firms impacted by supply chain constraints in the second half of 2021. Despite employment growth near all-time highs, many firms are also struggling to find the right employees for their specific needs, which has led to implications for the current workforce. Nearly 30% of firms report that the current size of their workforce is insufficient for present market conditions.

Additional survey data and infographics, including in-depth looks at regional variations, hiring/talent acquisition efforts and other business concerns among middle market companies, can be found at

About the Middle Market Indicator (MMI)

The MMI, which was created in 2012, surveys 1,000 executives (CEOs, CFOs and other financial decision makers) from the middle market to examine topics related to business capabilities, performance, growth drivers and economic outlook among other topics. The 2021 Year-End MMI was fielded during December 2021. It is weighted to accurately reflect the size, industry-wide and geographic distribution of this sector, which includes companies ranging from $10 million to $1 billion in annual revenue. The survey is conducted by RTi Research on behalf of the National Center for the Middle Market.

About the National Center for the Middle Market (NCMM)

The National Center for the Middle Market is a collaboration between The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business, Chubb and Visa. It exists for a single purpose: to ensure that the vitality and robustness of middle market companies are fully realized as fundamental to our nation’s economic outlook and prosperity. The center is the leading source of knowledge, leadership and innovative research on the middle market economy, providing critical data analysis and insights for companies, policymakers and other key stakeholders. NCMM is fully committed to funding and distributing the most credible open-sourced research, dynamically creating new knowledge, providing programs that drive value for middle market companies and offering a well-informed outlook on the health and future of the middle market via the Middle Market Indicator.