NC Economic Development Efforts Win National Prosperity Cup

May 3, 2021

North Carolina is the winner of Site Selection magazine’s 2021 Prosperity Cup, recognizing the state-level organizations with the most successful business recruitment and retention efforts in the past year.

North Carolina leapt five spots in the national Prosperity Cup rankings to become No. 1 this year, bumping Texas from first place last year. In 2020, North Carolina placed No. 6.

This year’s top award, which considers the impact of project wins in 2020, is shared by the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC) and the North Carolina Department of Commerce. The EDPNC operates under contract to state Commerce, and they work together to support the creation of sustainable jobs and investment in the state.

“Our analysis shows that the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina and the Department of Commerce have demonstrated that they, working with local and regional agencies statewide, can deliver the location solutions most required by capital investors in life sciences, aerospace and other key industry sectors,” said Mark Arend, editor in chief of Site Selection magazine, which announced the award today.

Christopher Chung, chief executive officer of the EDPNC, welcomed the recognition, which comes on the heels of several major project announcements over the past 12 months.

They include Apple choosing the Research Triangle region for its first East Coast campus, a $1-billion investment creating 3,000 new jobs; Google picking Durham for a cloud engineering hub expected to grow to 1,000 employees; and Centene Corp. planning a $1-billion East Coast headquarters and tech hub that company officials say will ultimately create 6,000 new jobs in Charlotte.

There’s also FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies announcing a $2-billion, 725-job biopharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Holly Springs; Pratt & Whitney planning a $650-million, 800-job plant in Asheville; Nestlé Purina Petcare Company investing $450 million in renovating a former Eden brewery into a pet food factory employing 300; and Thermo Fisher Scientific announcing a $500-million, 500-job expansion in Greenville.

“We greatly appreciate Site Selection recognizing North Carolina’s business recruitment and expansion success with this year’s Prosperity Cup,” Chung said. “Economic development is a team sport, and our local, regional and state partners work seamlessly together to show businesses that North Carolina is the best location for them to locate and grow.”

The nationwide 2021 Prosperity Cup is based on measures of state economic development activity in 2020 that include the total number of new and expanded facilities in the state, total capital investment in new and expanded facilities, and total number of new jobs created. It also considers measures of business-climate attractiveness.

For more information on this year’s Prosperity Cup, including how other states ranked, click here. The Prosperity Cup is featured in Site Selection’s May issue, which also highlights its Global Best to Invest locations.