One thing the Midwest offers is a talented and skilled workforce, says Gretchen Perkins, a partner with Huron Capital Partners and winner of Mergers & Acquisitions' 2014 Dealmaker of the Year. To retain and attract a talented work force, the Midwest has an affordable cost of living compared with other areas of the country, including: access to outdoor recreation, great public schools, great university systems and trade school programs. Additionally, the Midwest has "a relatively friendly regulatory environment," says Perkins. See the Sponsored Roundtable: Credit, Capital and Confidence Spark Midwest Dealmaking.