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Susan O'Rourke | October 12, 2021

North Carolina educators know that fostering globally-minded students helps them advance in today’s globally-focused economy—especially with several international businesses right in our backyard. The global investment in all parts of North Carolina has grown significantly. Today, North Carolina is a center for international businesses in industries ranging from aerospace engineering and energy to pharmaceuticals, textiles, and even candy-making.  

Governor Roy Cooper has affirmed both the value North Carolinians bring to the global economy and the importance of global businesses our state’s continued economic growth. In 2017, Governor Cooper signed the Open Investment Policy Proclamation which celebrated the job creation brought about by global enterprises and “[reaffirmed] our commitment to ensuring an open, welcoming environment that supports investment from global companies.” Recently, North Carolina was ranked sixth in the nation in foreign direct investment, according to a 2021 report from Business Studies, and recognized as the best state for business in a 2021 Forbes report.  

UNC World View discusses global business in North Carolina at two virtual programs for community college and early college educators: Global is Local Business Summit (October 13th) and Global Business in a New World (November 5th). Take a look through some of the international businesses found across our state and join us to learn more about preparing students for the global workforce. 

Bharat Forge Aluminum USA (India) 

  • Locations in cities including Sanford 
  • A branch of Bharat Forge, the “world’s largest forging company” that works in a number of industries including automotive, aerospace, and construction 
  • Recently opened an aluminum manufacturing plant with the support of a Job Investment Development Grant from the North Carolina Economic Investment Committee   

Daimler (Germany) 

  • Locations in cities including Gastonia, Cleveland, and Mount Holly 
  • A company operating truck manufacturing plants here in North Carolina 
  • Notably, “[in] 2017, Mount Holly Truck Manufacturing Plant was recognized at the highest level, Environmental Steward, by the state of NC Department of Environmental Quality.” 

Siemens (Germany) 

  • Locations in cities including Charlotte, Cary, and Wendell 
  • A company with projects tackling industry, infrastructure, transport, and healthcare 
  • Recent projects include making Charlotte more sustainable through building and transportation technologies  

Novo Nordisk (Denmark) 

  • Locations in cities including Clayton and Durham  
  • A pharmaceutical company dedicated to diabetes research and treatment  

Honda Aircraft Company (Japan) 

  • Locations in cities including Greensboro  
  • A branch of Honda focused on aerospace technology and manufacturing  

Balfour Beatty (England) 

  • Working on projects in cities including Wilmington, Havelock, James City, Maysville, Charlotte, and Raleigh 
  • An infrastructure group working in construction and investment  

Eaton Corporation (United States-Ireland) 

  • Locations in cities including Arden, Forest City, Grover, and Charlotte 
  • A power management company invested in sustainable technology and solutions