News & Media

NC wins Platinum Shovel Award for Excellence in Economic Development

After a record-setting year for economic development projects, North Carolina is again proving why business is better here. The state received a 2023 Platinum Shovel Award for excellence in economic development from Area Development magazine.

North Carolina is the only state in the country to earn the recognition. This is the second year in a row North Carolina received a Platinum Shovel Award. Last year, the inaugural year for the platinum award category, it shared the title with Tennessee.

“I’m proud of the people of North Carolina who deserve being recognized for economic excellence in 2022,” Governor Roy Cooper said. “Our world class workforce, our positive business environment and our high-quality community colleges and universities continue to attract top businesses to our state.”

Area Development’s annual Shovel Awards recognize states for their cumulative achievements in attracting high-value investment projects that will create a significant number of new jobs in their communities. All 50 states across the country submitted their top job creation and investment projects from 2022. States were then scored based on the number of new jobs to be created in relation to the state’s population, the combined dollar amount of the company investments, the number of new facilities and the diversity of industry represented. Winners were selected in platinum, gold, or silver shovel categories.

“Success in economic development takes a strong team, and Team North Carolina shows once again that we’re the best in the world,” North Carolina Secretary of Commerce Machelle Baker Sanders said. “The state’s economic developers at the local, regional, and state level work tirelessly to share North Carolina’s competitive advantages with company decision makers. This national award recognizes our teamwork and talented workforce. I couldn’t be more proud of our state and its economic development champions.”

In addition to the Platinum Shovel award, North Carolina also had two projects recognized as Projects of the Year. The 2022 Non-Manufacturing Project of the Year was given to Macy’s Inc. for its first-ever fully automated distribution center in China Grove. The project will create 2,800 new jobs and invest $584.3 million. VinFast’s electric vehicle and battery manufacturing facility in Moncure was recognized as the 2022 Manufacturing Project of the Year. The project will create 7,500 jobs and invest $4 billion.

“North Carolina had another robust year in 2022, with more than 28,000 new jobs and $19.3 billion in capital investment announced, in industries ranging from life sciences to advanced manufacturing and to clean energy,” said Christopher Chung, CEO of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC). “Our strong public and private partnerships have been the key to winning economic development projects throughout 2022.”

North Carolina was previously honored by the magazine, having received Gold Shovel awards in 2018 and 2021; and Silver Shovel awards in 2009, 2011–2017, and 2019–2020.

Area Development’s report on this year’s Gold and Silver Shovel Award and Project of the Year award winners is available online.

Source:  Charlotte Regional Business Alliance