Employing a Superior Workforce in Little Rock

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, Feb. 20, 2017 12:10 am  

The sustained strength of the Little Rock region's nationally recognized economy and its ability to weather national or global economic downturns is directly attributable to a regional approach to development and the diversity of its business community.

“The Little Rock community has helped us establish a strong foundation along with a talented workforce at a facility which produces motor graders for the entire world,” said Caterpillar’s Paul Rivera. Little Rockers make things — smartly and efficiently. With targeted workforce development from the region’s community colleges and universities, aircraft interiors, road graders, windmill blades, steel pipes and processed food make advanced manufacturing one of the region’s top employers.

With its central location, skilled workforce and strong sense of community, Little Rock is the ideal environment for any high-level, high-volume business. That’s why a myriad of global industries, including our private equity, commercial real estate and automotive businesses, are proud to call Little Rock home.

- Frankin McLarty, co-founder and co-president McLarty Capital Partners


Caterpillar which opened its North Little Rock plant in 2010, manufactures eight motor grader models, producing over 1,000 in its first year to be sold throughout the world.

Dassault Falcon Jet Corp, the region’s top manufacturing employer and the French company’s largest facility in the world, continues to grow to accommodate the completions of its new 5X and 8X aircraft, investing in a $2.3 million expansion in 2015

Sage V Foods produces frozen and instant rice from its state-of-the-art cooking and freezing plant at the Little Rock Port. 

Saint Gobain one of the world’s largest industrial companies, made the glass for Louis XIV’s Palace at Versailles and makes ceramic proppants at its 100,000-SF facility on 68 acres in Saline County.

Welspun Tubular, LLC, based in India, manufactures steel pipes for the oil and gas industry from its twice-expanded, $280 million, 700-acre Little Rock Port location.

The Numbers

  • No. 2 highest manufacturing employment in the South (National Association of Manufacturers 2016).
  • No. 2 lowest cost of doing business in the U.S. (CNBC’s Top States for Business 2014).
  • No. 9 “Best Value” city (Trivago.com 2017).

Aircraft and aircraft-related parts and services are Arkansas’ second-largest export. There are approximately 100 airports in the state, which ranks ninth in terms of operating costs on the United States aerospace manufacturing attractiveness index.



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