Foreign Firms in the Charlotte Region

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The dedication of Charlotte’s leadership to ensure the city’s place in the global economy can be seen in the number of foreign firms locating in the region. The Charlotte area boasts 944 foreign-owned firms that employ more than 68,000 people, and the number of firms continues to increase. The Charlotte Chamber actively works to attract international firms, working with more than 60 companies that decided to bring their businesses into Mecklenburg County over the past two years.

These 944 foreign-owned firms represent 796 different parent companies from 46 different countries. Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan and France have the largest number of companies in the Charlotte area, representing 57 percent of all foreign firms.

Nearly two-thirds of the area’s foreign firms are located solely in Mecklenburg County. There are 193 German-owned companies in Mecklenburg County – the most of any country. Since 2003, the number of German-owned firms has increased by 28 percent, Canadian by 30 percent and French by 50 percent. Indian and Irish firms have also significantly expanded in the area in the same time frame.

Research for Charlotte’s International Review is funded by the Charlotte Chamber. Included in this list are companies with at least 50 percent foreign ownership.

Note on methodology: The 2013 report’s methodology is different than previous reports (2011 and prior). The directory now combines all 16 counties into one listing instead of separating Mecklenburg County from the other counties. Due to this change, some numbers may not align with previous reports. To account for this change, the 2003 report was reanalyzed using current methodology in order to see trends.


Country

2014

2003

Germany

191

148

United Kingdom

120

74

Canada

92

69

Japan

80

51

France

60

38

Switzerland

55

40

Italy

51

43

The Netherlands

47

21

Sweden

35

32

China

32

3

Australia

20

4

Ireland

17

4

Belgium

14

12

Austria

13

3

Denmark

12

9

India

12

4

Taiwan

10

6

Mexico

9

5

Brazil

8

2

Finland

7

5

South Korea

7

4

Luxembourg

6

2

Bermuda

5

5

Israel

5

1

South Africa

5

6

Spain

5

1

Czech Republic

3

1

Singapore

3

0

Other (17)

23

11

Total

947

606