#50 California

From the Governor

“California is a rocket-fueled engine of human industry and innovation, the nation’s greatest job creator and the fifth-largest economy in the world.” —Gov. Gavin Newsom

GDP Growth in the Golden State

The Golden State may not always place highly in business- friendly and tax rankings, but officials say the perception doesn’t correlate with reality. Nearly 50 Fortune 500 companies are located in California, and there’s no shortage of companies willing to expand here. From the Bay Area to San Diego, tech and manufacturing remain strong drivers. The Gap, Chipotle, Amazon, DuPont and Facebook have made notable investments here in the past year.

Key Contacts

California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development

Panorea Avdis, Director
(916) 322-0694
1400 10th Street, 2nd Floor
Sacramento, CA 95814

Key Incentives

California Competes Tax Credit: Offers a flexible income tax credit for businesses that come, stay and grow in the state.

California Research Credit: Offers a tax credit of up to 15% for taxpayers engaged in qualified research activities that are undertaken to discover new technology, develop a new business component or pursue a “process of experimentation.”

Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Manufacturing: Offers a partial exemption of sales and use tax on certain manufacturing and R&D equipment purchases and leases.

Advanced Transportation and Manufacturing Sales and Use Tax Exemption: The California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority offers a full sales and use tax exclusion for manufacturers that promote alternative energy and advanced transportation.


California Association for Local Economic Development: caled.org

California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development: business.ca.gov

Greater Sacramento Economic Council: selectsacramento.com

Los Angeles Economic Development Corp.: laedc.org

San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp.: sandiegobusiness.org

San Francisco Center for Economic Development: sfced

Highlighted Program or Initiative

The California Made program encourages consumer product awareness and promotes the purchase of goods manufactured in the state. The CA Made label is offered to manufacturers, along with networking, technical advising and additional marketing through the Made in California partnership.

Big Deals

  • Gap announced in March 2018 it will open an e-commerce center in Fresno and create 515 jobs over the next two years.
  • Samsung Electronics opened a design innovation center in San Francisco in April 2018.
  • Chipotle Mexican Grill announced in May 2018 it will relocate its headquarters from Denver to Newport Beach.
  • Katerra announced in July 2018 it will invest nearly $56 million in a manufacturing facility in San Joaquin County and create more than 648 jobs.
  • Amazon opened a new tech hub office in San Diego and a second distribution center in Stockton.
  • DuPont opened its Silicon Valley Technology Innovation Center in September 2018.
  • Facebook continued to expand in Freemont, Sunnyvale and Menlo Park with three new work hubs for a nearly 4 million-square-foot expansion.

Big Companies

49 Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in the state, including:

Wells Fargo
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Cisco Systems

C-Suite Testimonials

“We’ve had phenomenal growth for the past several years and in order to keep the momentum, we chose to add a location in Roseville…. With teams in the Bay Area and Southern California, the Sacramento area was the natural next step and the region presents a great opportunity for talent and customer acquisition.” —Chris Burnley, Founder and CEO, Corefact

“We’ll always be proud of our Denver roots where we opened our first restaurant 25 years ago. The consolidation of offices and the move to California will help us drive sustainable growth while continuing to position us well in the competition for top talent.” —Brian Niccol, CEO, Chipotle

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