In 2016, Indiana’s current-dollar GDP was $341.9 billion and ranked 16th in the United States top contributors. With a Human Development Indicator (HDI) of 4.56, Indiana ranks as the 39th most developed state. Estimates predict that this year the manufacturing industry is expected to go beyond its previous impression of 16% of that figure.
Indiana’s economy is considered as one of the best in the United States for several reasons. It has a conservative industrial system, the low taxes levied on commercial and industrial establishments, and a set of relatively stable labor laws that have been in place since the 19th century.
Let’s go beyond the stats and take a look at the most important sectors within the state in addition to some of the most significant companies within each sector.
Within this industry Indiana is the top contributing state, followed by California. Indiana’s pharmaceutical industry exports about $6040 million worth of products each year. The production peaked in 2012 following a 24% annual growth rate. This explains why today, pharmaceuticals are so consolidated within the state.
The pharmaceutical company, Eli Lilly & Company, ranks as #76 on “Forbes America’s Top Public Companies” and is the major player in Indiana. It was founded in 1876 in Indianapolis, by a Swedish chemist Colonel Eli Lilly, and his primary motivation was the lack of availability of medicines to Americans suffering in the post-Civil War era. The company is also the 10th largest employer in the state. A huge plus of Eli Lilly & Co. is that its employees are considered the most valuable resource. This is the reason that has led them many times to invest both in their people and in the state.
Automotive and Parts Manufacturing
While Indiana is the #7 exporter of vehicles and its parts, it has one of the lowest annual growth rates from the top exporters. However, this statistic changes when we limit it to only motor vehicle parts and accessories, a classification we can say is the state’s strength. In this category they come in 4th place very close to their 3rd place competitor, Ohio.
Within the automotive industry, we find one of the most emblematic auto producers, Rolls Royce. They operate within the US and in several parts of Canada. However, none of its venues can compare with the one in Indianapolis, which employs over 4000 of the city’s residents. In 2015, the company decided to invest approximately $600 million in modernizing it’s plant and for technology research. The ex-governor and current Vice President of the United States, Mike Pence commented that the company chose the state of Indiana because they offer “the business-friendly climate needed to succeed”. The reason behind this Rolls Royce decision were the incentives offered by the state such as tax credits and a skills enhancement grant.
Medical Device Manufacturing
By 2012 medical device manufacturing was the fourth largest sector in Indiana, generating about $2.84 million, with a very promising annual growth rate of around 7%. It supplies approximately 20,000 jobs for the state and creates an even closer relationship with the NAFTA members who are its main buyers.
Also within this industry, we find the 2nd largest company in the state, Cook Group Inc., reaching revenues of 2.2 billion for the past year. Within this group, we find Cook Medical, which is the part of the company that’s responsible for the production of minimally invasive medical devices. It has 41 medical specialties, and around 16,000 products making a difference in the lives of patients all over the world. We can highlight anesthesiology, pediatrics, gynecology, urology, neurology, and obstetrics. By 2016, it employed about 2500 people and rewards its employees with a salary 56% higher than the state average.
The state of Indiana during the last decades has created an environment where manufacturing industries can continue to develop. These favorable policies, on the part of the state government, have allowed the people of Indiana to collect the fruits of their labor and making Indiana the 13th “Best Place for Business”.
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