Market Commentaries are a series of timely analyses produced by the Orlando Economic Partnership’s Market Intelligence team. Commentaries are typically associated with a major data release or cover areas key to advancing the Partnership’s goal of Broad-based Prosperity®.

The Orlando Economic Partnership continually evaluates economic trends to identify industries with the greatest potential to advance the region’s economy.
Our latest assessment confirms six targeted industries where the region has existing expertise and where future opportunity abounds.
Ongoing growth in these areas will create opportunity for residents while allowing the region to stay at the forefront of innovation.

Economic development organizations typically select a handful of industries upon which to focus. This approach allows areas to prioritize high-wage industries with existing strength and strong job-creating potential, while aligning advocacy and regional investment strategies around key areas to improve local competitiveness.

The Orlando Economic Partnership is at the forefront of this movement, annually engaging in a data-driven process of identifying and validating targeted industries.

Identifying Key Strengths

The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) captures over 1,000 different economic activities. From these, the OEP identifies activities with the most potential to advance the region’s economic ambitions according to five key criteria:

  • Activities should be traded (non-local) since Orlando should seek to target and nurture activities that produce goods and services that bring money into the region.
  • Activities should have an average wage greater than or equal to 125% of Orlando’s regional average wage since targeted activities should offer wages higher than what’s already here.
  • Activities should have a higher-than-average local employment concentration (or location quotient, LQ) since Orlando should build on its existing strengths.
  • Activities should have grown their local employment base over the last five years at a greater rate than the nation since Orlando should seek to target and nurture activities in which the region has recently succeeded in growing its presence relative to the country.
  • Activities should be projected to add jobs nationally over the next five years at a greater rate than the economy overall since communities should seek to target and nurture those activities that are projected to add jobs at an above-average rate.
🗸Average Annual Wage ≥ $71,770
🗸LQ ≥ 1
🗸2018-2023 Local Employment Growth ≥ 5%
🗸2018-2023 National Employment Growth ≥ 6%

Earlier this year, this process culminated in a list of 74 key strengths for the region, establishing a starting point for identifying target industries.

Key strengths do not exist in isolation, but rather form part of larger industries made up of related activities. Therefore, these 74 key strengths were grouped into six key industries for strategic outreach and business development efforts:

Collectively, regional employment in these six industries has grown by more than six percent in the last five years and each industry offers an average annual wage of over $85,000.

The Partnership also has a strategic focus on the semiconductor industry because of the presence of NeoCity, Osceola County’s 500-acre epicenter of semiconductor manufacturing, and a $50.8 million federal investment in that area that positions the region to lead the nation in semiconductor reshoring.

The Path Forward

Using targeted industries also allows the region to stay at the forefront of innovation. Emerging technologies and trends such as AI, robotics, and clean energy—all growing strengths in our region—are not easily captured by statistics, yet all find a home in these six targeted industries. The world is changing in ways never imagined and Orlando must plan for a future we don’t yet know.

Strategic economic development with a key focus on specific strengths is critical to advancing broad-based prosperity. By concentrating on certain industries that offer high wages and future jobs, Orlando can forge a path towards prosperity that marries our existing expertise with future opportunities.