An Even Dozen | The Perryman Group

An Even Dozen

By: Dr. M. Ray Perryman
Published in syndication March 06, 2024

For the 12th year in a row, Texas attracted the lion's share of major corporate locations and expansions in the US, winning Site Selection magazine's coveted "Governor's Cup" yet again for 2023. The Cup is awarded to the state with the most projects involving a capital investment of at least $1 million, 20 or more new jobs, or 20,000 square feet of new construction. Site Selection also recognized Texas as having the nation's best business climate in November.

Texas gained 1,254 projects, up from 1,028 in 2022 and topping the record of 1,123 that the state set in 2021. The Lone Star State's total more than doubled second place Illinois, which had 552, and far outpaced Ohio (462), California, (374), Georgia (318), New York (272), Indiana (253), and Florida (250). For the third consecutive year, Texas had over twice as many projects as any other state.

The two largest projects were liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities involving investments of $18 billion and $13 billion. Several additional energy and chemicals and plastics projects along the Gulf Coast are also among the 25 largest. Other industries represented include technology and communications; electronics; automotive, machinery, equipment, and construction; food and beverage; and consumer products. Major projects are moving forward from Amarillo to Brownsville and from far West Texas to the coast. Big cities and smaller towns alike are well represented.

It's impressive to win at all, but 12 times in a row is next level. Add to that the fact that no other state even comes close and it's almost astonishing. It is a testament to the state's business friendliness and the work of many dedicated economic development professionals.

Additionally, this kind of momentum builds on itself. For example, Texas is attracting more people from other regions than any other state, including in young working-age ranges. A key reason for the move-ins is job opportunities and a lower cost structure and the ability to get ahead financially. Dynamic economies require a steady stream of skilled workers, and the state is attracting them. These new workers, in turn, facilitate additional growth.

The state's vast natural resources continue to serve as an important catalyst to growth. In addition to oil and natural gas, Texas is also emerging as a center for the next phase of energy including renewables, hydrogen, and nitrogen. The development of the LNG market not only enhances geopolitical stability through exports of natural gas to Europe and other nations, but also helps achieve climate goals in that it is frequently a replacement for higher-emissions coal.

Texas is well positioned to sustain this momentum, though it is crucial to invest in the educational and infrastructure resources required to ensure ongoing success. Stay safe!