Where FDI drives the bus

Friday, November 13, 2020

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By: Adam Bruns - Site Selection Magazine

Since the late 1980s, the global corporate facility projects database maintained and populated by Conway Data has tracked project locations and expansions by companies of every stripe in every U.S. state. But only within the past decade did we add to our columns of data a category tracking investing companies by country of ultimate beneficial owner.

Now that a critical mass of projects has been tracked, this fall we analyzed the 1,686 U.S. projects we’ve tracked since 2015 that have had at least a share of involvement by a foreign-based firm (i.e. joint ventures count). The Top 10s below represent the highest-ranking states and metros based on an index that awards points according to the territories’ ranking by number of projects involving foreign-based corporate end-user investors, total project-related capex and total project-related job creation.

The projects themselves display the power of FDI attraction for any territory’s economic development playbook.

In No. 1 Texas, they include an 80-job investment in Austin from Sweden’s Ericsson in 2018, followed up by a $3.9 million expansion this year. India’s Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and Infosys both have also invested in the Austin area this year, with the TCS project bringing 400 jobs. The same company expanded by more than 200 positions in Plano, a DFW suburb, in 2018. Well, actually, they just welcomed them into the TCS fold from Transamerica, as part of an agreement with Transamerica to transform the administration of its U.S. insurance and annuity business lines. TCS in fact is simply occupying several floors of the Transamerica building, and described the new employees as “part of TCS recruiting and protecting more than 2,200 Transamerica jobs across the U.S. in multiple locations.”

Read more about FDI rankings here

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