Key Industries

From a rich maritime legacy to a burgeoning tech and startup community, Tacoma helps businesses from all backgrounds succeed.

Marine cargo terminal
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Maritime

With more than 2,700 acres of Port property, Tacoma is home to the seventh largest container port in the U.S. The city’s 100+ year maritime history has helped it build strong trade partners across the globe, particularly in Pacific Rim markets, with which Tacoma trades about $46 billion in goods a year. Tacoma’s thriving maritime industry supports 29,000 jobs and is a major center for bulk, breakbulk, and automobiles cargoes.

Computer programmer
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Tech

Ranked by Forbes as the best region in the country for tech jobs, the Seattle-Tacoma region has seen massive growth in tech and cyber security jobs over the last few years. The University of Washington Tacoma’s Institute of Technology trains some of the best tech and computer science experts in the country, and hosts key networking events for big and small tech companies. Affordable office space, top talent, and a lively downtown community have attracted Silicon Valley tech companies, along with new and local tech startups. Tacoma’s retention rate for programmers and tech workers is also significantly higher than the rest of the country, allowing you to plan for stable, long-term. Learn more about Tacoma’s startup community.

Museum of glass
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Art

Art and culture are a major component of Tacoma’s economy. In fact, Tacoma is the second-most museum dense city in Washington State. According to a 2016 study, art and culture generates about $137 million in economic activity in Tacoma every year and support 3,656 jobs. From the Museum of Glass to the Rialto Theatre to the Tacoma Art Museum, art and culture are at the heart of Tacoma’s community and economy.

Franciscan medical building
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Healthcare

Tacoma is home to several major healthcare companies, including MultiCare Health Systems, CHI Franciscan Health and Kaiser Permanente. With a growing population, healthcare training programs, and a nearby military base, Tacoma’s healthcare industry has significant growth potential. In 2016, the healthcare sector increased employment by 28%. The University of Washington Tacoma also offers degrees in biomedical science, healthcare leadership, and nursing.

Airplane taking off
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Aerospace

The Seattle-Tacoma region is a hotbed for aerospace innovation and is home to major aerospace companies, such as Boeing, Toray Composites, AIM Aerospace, General Plastics, and Cadence Aerospace. Local government fully support the aerospace industry; in fact, they’ve passed some of the biggest aerospace tax breaks in history, saving Washington aerospace firms about $580 million in breaks, exemptions, and incentives from 2013 to 2015.

Bank buildings
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Banking and Insurance

Tacoma is home to two major financial institutions, including State Farm Insurance–one of Tacoma’s largest employers, with more than 2,000 employees. Tacoma is also home to Columbia Bank, KeyBank, JP Morgan Chase, and Umpqua Bank. The University of Washington Tacoma’s KeyBank Professional Development Center offers world-class training on entrepreneurship and business, and develops top talent within the banking and insurance industry. UW Tacoma’s Milgard School of Business also offers programs in finance, international business and management, and accounting.

Construction worker
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Construction

Construction is booming in Tacoma. In fact, Tacoma has one of the fastest growing construction industries in the country. In 2017, more than 2,000 multi-family homes will break ground in downtown; likewise, big businesses, like State Farm Mutual Insurance, Infoblox, New Cold, are significantly expanding their office and warehouse space. New restaurants, breweries, and hotel expansions are also surging, providing significant opportunities for construction throughout the region.

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