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With Fortune 500 companies being some of the largest businesses in the country, their headquarters can have local economic benefits.
Although a company's corporate headquarters doesn’t necessarily mean a lot of jobs, the presence of one can serve as a symbol of the state's prestige and can encourage other businesses and workers to come to the area.
The number of Fortune 500 companies headquartered in Connecticut increased from 14 in 2012 to 15 in 2022, with changes in the companies representing the state. The state's high number of headquarters relative to its population allows Connecticut to claim a ranking among the states with the highest number of headquarters per capita.
“Connecticut is a highly educated state. We have various skilled talent here. We have a strong competitive advantage compared to some of our other peers in the northeast. If you're looking at places like Boston, or New York, then you can come to Connecticut and get the same talent at a much lower cost, and your rents will be lower. And so you kind of get all of those assets that you would have in some of those larger jurisdictions,” said Rachel Gretencord, Vice President of Research at AdvanceCT, a nonprofit economic development organization in Connecticut.
Gretencord also mentioned that quality of life for workers is a big factor that businesses are taking into account, along with the fiscal health of a state and personalized attention that a company would receive in a state as small as Connecticut.
Seven companies were part of the 500 list in both 2012 and 2022, with health insurance provider Cigna having the largest rank improvement, going from a rank of 130 to 12.
Other companies that remained in both lists include Hartford Financial Services Group (131 to 160), Stanley Black & Decker (252 to 212), EMCOR Group (428 to 357), W.R. Berkley (471 to 371), Xerox Holdings (127 to 471) and Frontier Communications (464 to 499).
Two companies that dropped out of the Fortune 500 between 2012 and 2022 but still remain headquartered in Connecticut include Terex Corporation and Pitney Bowes Inc.
Meanwhile, General Electric moved its headquarters to Boston, while United Technologies Corp. followed suit after a merger with Raytheon.
Three other companies aren’t included in the Fortune 500 list due to mergers and acquisitions but still maintain headquarters in Connecticut. Those include Aetna Inc. (acquired by CVS), Praxair Inc. (acquired by Linde), and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (acquired by Marriott).
CEO of AdvanceCT, Peter Denious, said, “We'd much rather compete for our highly educated workforce, our schools, some of the best in the country ... So it's obviously a lot about talent. It's a lot about convenience of place, and we're obviously between New York and Boston in a kind of a strategically relevant corridor.”
Read more: CT has changed in the last decade. Here are 10 charts that show how.