As one of the world’s top 20 economies, the main commercial gateway to the Americas, and the principal commercial gateway to Latin America and the Caribbean, Florida has already attracted nearly USD 100 billion in investment by companies based outside the U.S. Florida is a global trade hub that can expand your business’ reach like no other.
Florida is one of the largest and most international U.S. states, with a rapidly expanding consumer market, favorable business environment, deep pool of highly-skilled labor, and easy global access. For many of the same reasons that Florida attracts tens of millions of international visitors each year, it is also a magnet for businesses from all over the world.
Companies headquartered outside the U.S. have so far invested nearly USD 100 billion in Florida, operating at several thousand individual locations all over the state. Foreign-affiliated firms employ nearly 420,000 Floridians across a range of sectors and are significant exporters of both products and high value-added services.
Florida serves as a hemispheric hub for international business, transportation and logistics, cross-border trade and investment, banking and finance, and arts and culture. No other location in the Americas can match Florida’s unique combination of a strategic geographic location, advanced multimodal infrastructure, multilingual workforce, and concentration of corporate and financial resources, all in an attractive geographical setting with an unmatched quality of life. Some reasons for companies from other countries to consider investing in Florida include:
1. Large, Dynamic Market: Florida’s trillion-dollar-plus economy is the 4th largest among U.S. states, and the 14th largest in the world – bigger than those of Spain or Indonesia – and about the same size as Mexico’s. Home to 22 million residents, Florida is now the 3rd most populous U.S. state, with one of the fastest-growing economies. Florida’s population increases by about a thousand new residents each day, or a third of a million each year.
2. Favorable Business Climate: Florida is consistently ranked among the most business-friendly states in the U.S. Low tax rates, political and monetary stability, regulatory predictability, enforceability of contracts, pro-business policies, and competitive business and living costs make Florida an attractive location for practically any type of business facility. Florida also offers a variety of fiscal, worker training, and other business incentives to encourage investment in the state. Florida has no state personal income tax, and a comparatively low 5.5% top marginal corporate income tax rate.
3. A Deep, Diverse Talent Pool: Florida’s 11.1 million-strong workforce is highly educated, technically skilled, and culturally and linguistically diverse, renowned for its strong work ethic. Globally prominent academic institutions, modern scientific and technical curricula, business-academia partnerships, and top-rated customized worker training programs make it easy to find the qualified talent needed by almost any kind of business. Florida’s labor costs are highly competitive, especially compared to other top-tier business locations in the United States and most other advanced economies. Florida’s average annual manufacturing wages are 15% lower than in Texas, and 37% lower than in California.
4. Global Connectivity: With its state-of-the-art infrastructure, Florida enables the efficient movement of goods, people, and data across the globe. The state’s multimodal transportation system includes 20 commercial airports, 15 deep-water seaports, advanced highway and rail networks, modern fiber-optic telecoms networks, and several major high-speed data transmission hubs. Direct air links enable global passenger and cargo mobility, while numerous shipping routes connect Florida to the world’s leading commercial hubs. Florida is home to one in five U.S. exporters, with the combined annual value of goods and services exports exceeding USD 120 billion. Goods valued at nearly $190 billion enter or exit the United States through Florida each year.
5. International Business Hub: Florida is host to several thousand affiliates of companies based outside the U.S., including hundreds of hemispheric or regional corporate headquarters. Besides corporate HQs, many international firms have located other kinds facilities in Florida, such as manufacturing plants, research & development labs, sales and marketing offices, logistics and distribution operations, and customer service centers, to take advantage of easy access to markets worldwide. Foreign-affiliated companies in Florida have holdings of nearly USD 100 billion, employing nearly 417,000 Floridians.
6. Gateway to Latin America: Florida is the Americas’ commercial crossroads. Due to its strategic geographic location, advanced infrastructure, access to finance, and multicultural and multilingual workforce, Florida serves as the principal gateway to Latin American and Caribbean markets for both U.S. and overseas companies. Florida accounts for about a third of total U.S. trade with Latin America and the Caribbean and is home to the world’s largest cluster of professional and financial service providers specializing in Latin America. There are more direct flights from Florida airports to Latin American and Caribbean cities than from the rest of the Unites States combined. Miami is regularly voted “best Latin American city for business” by CEOs.
7. Cutting-Edge Innovation: As the home of America’s space program and the birthplace of IBM’s personal computer, Florida has a long history of developing and deploying innovative technologies. Nowadays, some 33,000 high-tech business establishments employ more than half a million Floridians, generating USD 14 billion in high-tech exports annually. Florida’s biotech firms are behind some of humanity’s greatest health breakthroughs, while its fintech and cybersecurity professionals are ensuring the smooth, secure conduct of online business. From marine biology to space exploration, propulsion systems to surgical lasers, gene therapy to mobile apps, Floridians are devising cutting-edge solutions for the next economy. Florida’s investments in research and development (R&D) average close to $178 million annually, ranking #4 for state R&D expenditures, while Florida’s startup firms attract more than $7 billion in venture capital deals each year.