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Why Arkansas?

This high-energy video showcases multiple business leaders talking about why being in Arkansas is good for business, not only for their organization but also for their employees. Industries highlighted include tech, food and beverage, metals, aerospace, logistics, and timber.


Arkansas' transportation network and central U.S. location define the state as a strategic distribution center. Midway between Mexico City and Montreal, Arkansas offers a valuable distribution advantage.

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 CCI Designated

Jonesboro Industrial Sites B & C

Jonesboro, AR

153 Acres
Industrial SITE
 CCI Designated

Newport Industrial Site

Newport, AR

98 Acres
Industrial SITE
 CCI Designated

Russellville East End Industrial Site

Russellville, AR

60 Acres
Industrial SITE
 CCI Designated

Paragould South Industrial Site

Paragould, AR

79 Acres
Industrial SITE
 CCI Designated

Crossett Industrial Park East Site

Crossett, AR

34 Acres
Industrial SITE
 CCI Designated

South Port Site - Port of Little Rock

Little Rock, AR

65 Acres
Industrial SITE
You're in good company

AEDC's mission is to create economic opportunity by attracting higher paying jobs, expanding and diversifying our state and local economies, increasing incomes and investment, and generating positive growth throughout Arkansas. Here are some examples of businesses that are thriving!

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Five maps illustrate foreign investment in Arkansas

 December 20, 2018

Nearly 300 foreign-owned companies have found a home in Arkansas, from a wide cross-section of industries. As of November this year, the total is 293 (see Figure 1). These companies are subsidiaries of foreign enterprises, also referred to as parent or primary companies. These foreign-owned companies range from retail, manufacturing, and technology, to service providing, just to name a few. Some of the largest companies include Dassault Falcon Jet Corporation and L’Oreal from France, ASEA Brown Boveri (or ABB) from Switzerland, O.K. Foods Inc. from Mexico, and Nucor-Yamato Steel Company from Japan. Please read the full list and map (Figure 2) for more details of the companies.

Figure 1: Counts of foreign-owned companies in Arkansas

Figure 2: Map of foreign investment in Arkansas (downloadable PDF version)

Overall, according to data released in fall 2017, approximately 48,100 workers are employed by foreign-owned firms, and more than 60 percent of the jobs are in manufacturing. Japanese-owned companies employ the most workers, followed by Swiss-owned companies (see Figure 3).

Top 10 Foreign-Owned Company Parent Countries by Employment in Arkansas

Figure 3: Top 10 foreign-owned company parent countries by employment in Arkansas

We also highlighted investments made by companies from four countries: Japan, Germany, United Kingdom and France, with individual maps (see Figure 4). The reasons for selecting these countries are: 1) These countries have made the most investments in Arkansas, with the highest amount of parent companies that are involved; 2) AEDC’s historical international marketing-focused area covers these countries; and 3) AEDC currently has foreign offices in Japan, Germany and China, and the highlighted countries are in proximity to these local offices.

Investment from Japan, Germany, France and United Kingdom

Figure 4: Investment from Japan, Germany, France and United Kingdom

Between 2010 and 2015, Arkansas’ foreign direct investment (FDI) employment increased 34 percent, compared to the state’s overall private-sector employment increase rate of only 5.2 percent. As of January 2018, according to this report, FDI contributes to about 3.4 percent of the state’s total private industry employment. 

“I am pleased that Arkansas is a national leader in FDI growth,” said Governor Asa Hutchinson. Arkansas continues to draw global attention as an attractive destination for business. Please get in touch with AEDC’s international business development team to learn more how about the pro-business climate in the Natural State can benefit your business.



Small Business Friendliness

3rd Lowest

Cost of Doing Business

300 Fortune 500

Companies with Offices Here. Arkansas is Home to Walmart, J.B. Hunt, Tyson, Windstream, Murphy Oil, and Dillard's.


The timber and paper industry is vital to the rural Arkansas economy. Arkansas produces over 18.9 million acres of timber each year. The state is looking to expand its role in the timber business, as the United States still has a great need for domestic timber.