Nashville, TN is a Hot Spot for Business

The Nashville area's business advantages and quality of life are drawing talent and investment

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Nashville, TN
Courtesy of WeWork

For businesses of all kinds, from global corporations and corporate headquarters operations to entrepreneurial startups, the Nashville area is a hot spot for investment, growth and job creation.

Across the 10-county region, relocating and expanding businesses find advantages including a central Southeast location linked by three interstates, multiple jet-capable airports including Nashville International and Smyrna Airport, low costs and a skilled workforce. The region’s vibrant quality of life is a magnet for talent from around the world.

In fiscal year 2016-2017, the Nashville region announced 112 business relocations and expansions corresponding to 10,942 new jobs and more than $2.47 billion in capital investment, according to the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce.

Unprecedented Growth

“The Nashville region is defined by a diverse economy, low costs of doing business, a creative culture and a well-educated population,” says Katie Sharp, manager of economic development for the Nashville Chamber. “Historically, our region has also benefitted from its strategic, central location with access to more than half the nation’s population within 650 miles. In recent years, Nashville’s unprecedented economic growth and population growth has been attractive to companies looking to relocate or expand their operations.”

Expanding or relocating businesses include Bridgestone Americas in downtown Nashville, Schneider Electric in Franklin, Gap Inc. in Gallatin, Federal Express in Murfreesboro, General Motors in Spring Hill and Journeys in Lebanon.

Corporate headquarters in the region range from sectors including retail (Dollar General, Tractor Supply Co., Kirkland’s) and health care (HCA, LifePoint Health, Community Health Systems, HealthSpring, HealthStream and HealthTrust) to manufacturing (Nissan North America, Bridgestone Americas and Hankook Tire).

The Nashville MSA is home to six Fortune 500 and eight Fortune 1000 companies and is the U.S. capital for the health care and music industries. The more than two dozen colleges and universities in the region offer a diverse student pipeline to draw talent as companies grow, says Sharp.

Mars Petcare, which has operations in several Tennessee locations, is expanding its U.S. headquarters in Franklin. The company operates its Innovation Center in Thompson’s Station in Williamson County.

“Middle Tennessee is centrally located and provides great access to our customers, consumers, suppliers, and manufacturing operations for Mars Petcare U.S.,” says Jam Stewart, the company’s vice president for corporate affairs

High Quality of Life

“Tennessee and Williamson County offer a fantastic business climate and continually rank high in national surveys about economic growth and quality of life – and the high quality of life here is very helpful as we recruit for top talent. As a privately owned, principles-based company, we’ve also found that Williamson County fits our unique culture very well,” says Stewart.

The new headquarters will continue the company’s tradition of an open work environment –with no offices – that fosters collaboration and a sense of community. And, of course, pets are welcome.

“Dogs, dogs, dogs! We have dogs in the office every day, and since our purpose is to make a better world for pets, it’s imperative that comes across the minute you step foot in our doors,” says Stewart.

Orchids Paper Products, a leader in the private-label tissue industry, announced the establishment of its headquarters in Brentwood, creating up to 25 jobs in Davidson County. The company renovated approximately 6,700 square feet of space.

“We expect the convenient location of our new office and the desirability of Davidson County as a place to live and work to help us attract and retain talent,” says Jeff Schoen, Orchids Paper president and CEO.

The Nashville area benefits from a diverse economy, and its balance of health care and corporate operations, manufacturing and supply chain sectors makes Nashville one of the nation’s most attractive growth centers. A business-friendly climate in a right-to-work state, the absence of city or state income taxes and a low corporate tax rate add to the region’s appeal.

The region’s quality of life is an attraction for businesses and talented workers. Entertainment choices include professional sports with the NFL's Tennessee Titans and the NHL’s Nashville Predators, as well as the Nashville Sounds Triple-A baseball team and soon, a new MSL Soccer team that will play in the city’s planned new stadium.

“The Nashville region has a vibrant culture centered on creativity, music and entrepreneurship that complements its praise-worthy dining scene and popular entertainment venues,” says Sharp.


Bill Lewis is an award-winning business journalist whose work has appeared in publications across the United States. Bill's experience includes serving as a Capitol Hill reporter a... more

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Mon, 05/06/2019 - 12:22