#22 Delaware

From the Governor

“Delaware’s economy remains in a period of significant transition, and we’re focused on making sure our economy works for all Delawareans…. That starts with improving access to good-paying jobs across our state. [In August], I signed into law pieces of legislation that will help revitalize Delaware’s abandoned industrial sites and restructure our economic development efforts to support small business owners, innovators and entrepreneurs.” —Gov. John Carney

Growing Interest in the First State

While many organizations still file their articles of incorporation in The First State for its business-friendly laws, they’re also looking at the state for new operations. Adesis announced it will construct a state-of-the-art lab in New Castle, and Ashland and Belchim Crop Protection have both announced headquarters here in in the past year.

Key Contacts

Economic Development Office

99 Kings Highway,
Dover, DE 19901

Key Incentives

Delaware Strategic Fund: Offers low-interest loans and grants to businesses for job creation, relocation, expansion or brownfield development.

New Economy Jobs Tax Credit: Offers a state tax credit based on the portion of total payroll for companies that contribute high-paying jobs to the state economy.

Job Creation Tax Credit: Offers credits against corporate or personal income taxes, gross receipts tax and public utility tax for businesses that hire five or more employees and invest at least $200,000 in a qualified facility.

Delaware New Jobs Infrastructure Fund: Offers economic assistance for renovation, construction and improvements to roads, utilities or infrastructure to support new business projects.


Delaware Prosperity Partnership: deprosperitypartnership.com

Wilmington Economic Development Corp.: wedco.org

Delawareans for Environmental and Economic Development: deedworks.org

Highlighted Program or Initiative

In March 2018, Gov. John Carney announced an agreement to lease and significantly expand the Port of Wilmington and create a new container shipping facility on the Delaware River. GT USA Wilmington, a subsidiary of Gulftainer, will invest up to $600 million in the port over the next nine years, something state officials say will expand capacity and economic opportunity in the region.

Big Deals

  • Adesis, a subsidiary of Universal Display, announced in December 2017 it will open a state-of-the art lab in New Castle.
  • DowDuPont announced in January 2017 a $200 million upgrade of its Experimental Station research facility in Alapocas.
  • Belchim Crop Protection opened its U.S. headquarters in Wilmington in July 2018.
  • Ashland announced in August 2018 it will move its headquarters from Covington, Kentucky to Brandywine Springs and create 1,000 jobs in the area by 2020.

Big Companies

Mountaire Farms
Perdue Farms
AztraZeneca US
M&T Bank

Two Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in the state:


C-Suite Testimonials

“We are pleased to announce our expanding footprint and increased investment to further boost research, innovation and job opportunities in Delaware…. Furthermore, by co-locating in our New Castle headquarters and the Experimental Station, we believe that we are building a world-class technology and manufacturing hub to support our customers from innovation to commercialization.” —Andrew Cottone, President, Adesis

“This area provides access to an outstanding workforce, easy access for our corporate partners and interaction with a thriving economic and scientific community.” —Richard Birkmeyer, CEO, CD Diagnostics

- Advertisement -


CEO1000 Tracker

From the schools they went to to the types of companies they run, CEO1000 is tracking the trends among the CEOs of the 1,000 largest U.S. companies.


CEOs Fear Washington Instability Could Trigger 2020 Recession

Political uncertainty, ongoing tariffs and scarcity of talent are forcing CEOs to delay investments and play it safe—at least for now.
- Advertisement -


Best and Worst States For Business

Are you looking to relocate or expand? Evaluate each state's strengths with Chief Executive's 2019 Best & Worst States for Business.


CEO of the Year

Once a year, we celebrate the achievements of a CEO, honored for his or her success in and dedication to business, shareholders and customers.


Sign Up to Receive Chief Executive’s Magazine and e-Newsletters

Chief Executive’s publications are designed to help CEOs do their jobs better and run their businesses more effectively. Subscribe here.