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Workin’ 9 to 5: Major industries and employers in Panther City

The economic landscape of Fort Worth, who’s hiring, and who’s most likely to expand investments into our community.

Fort Worth is home to some of the biggest companies in the nation. | Photo by @katebranning 

Fort Worth is home to some of the biggest companies in the nation. | Photo by @katebranning

Table of Contents

More than 957,000 people (and thousands of businesses) contribute to the Fort Worth metro area’s economy. But have you ever wondered about Cowtown’s heaviest hitters? Consider this Fort Worth Business 101 — your guide to our region’s six key industries and major employers.

The key industries

Six key industries represent Fort Worth’s economy, based on data from the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce. We’ve listed them in order of employment numbers.

Transportation and Warehousing | 62,000 employees
With AllianceTexas’ $120 billion economic impact on North Texas, Cowtown is ideal for its easy access to airports, rail, and highway services. The city is home to Bell Nexus’s vertical lift VTOL Aircraft (the preferred option for Uber’s Elevate air taxi program) and key logistics facilities including Amazon Regional Air Hub, Alliance Westport, and BNSF Railway.

Healthcare and Social Assistance | 55,000 employees
With massive providers like JPS Health Network, Cook Children’s Medical Center + Texas Health Resources, it’s hard to live in Cowtown without knowing at least one person in the healthcare industry. Local hospitals are also making names for themselves in the healthcare industry, like Medical City Fort Worth having completed 1000 kidney transplants and topping the nation in one-year kidney transplant success.

Government | 52,000 employees
When you account for the federal, state, and local employees, it adds up to a lot. The largest employers include the US Air Force Reserve, Tarrant County, and the City of Fort Worth.

Retail Trade | 45,000 employees
The area is filled with 10+ shopping districts and dominated by the Western retail experience with local brands like Tandy Leather, M.L. Leddy’s, Justin Brands, Ariat, and Old Gringo Boots. Additionally, larger retailers like Walmart, Albertsons, and Central Market make up a big piece of the puzzle.

Manufacturing | 41,000 employees
The largest manufacturing sectors are aircraft, automotive, and pharmaceutical and are supported by BNSF, one of the largest railways in the US. Notable projects include MP Materials’ magnet factory — the first manufacturing facility of its kind in the country — and the new production facilities for the plant-based dairy company Oatly and LG electric vehicle chargers.

Accommodation and Food Services | 40,000 employees
The estimated 10.8 million visitors each year — and their $3 billion spending — have played a major impact on the economy. The area is home to American Airlines Corporate HQ, DFW International Airport (the third-busiest in the world), and the Stockyards, which attract 1.2+ million visitors annually. Read more about the economic impact.

The major players

Now that we’ve established the major industries, we bet you’re curious about specific names. Whether you’re job hunting (or just “casually prospecting”), here are six major employers.

American Airlines Group Inc.
35,000 | Transportation | Search jobs
Ranked No. 89 on the Fortune 500 list, the airline made nearly $49 billion in revenue in 2022, a 64% increase from the year before. Last year, the company opened a 600-room hospitality complex located at the corporate headquarters to ensure employees can better integrate with new hires. The company also updated the seating on its long-haul flights for a better guest experience.

Lockheed Martin
18,500 | Manufacturing | Search jobs
Known for developing and producing the F-35 fighter jet for the past two decades, the aerospace company ranked No. 60 on Fortune’s 500 list as one the most powerful companies globally. It was also ranked one of the country’s best employers to work for in 2022.

Fort Worth ISD
10,700 | Education | Search jobs
The Fort Worth Independent School District is the seventh-largest in Texas with 146 public schools + 75,000+ students for the 2022-23 school year. In 2022, the district received a B rating from the Texas Education Agency’s accountability report card — improving from its C rating in 2019. The 2023 ratings have yet to be released.

NAS Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base
11,000 | Government | Search jobs
NAS JRB Fort Worth is home to units in the Navy, Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, and Texas Air National Guard. According to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, the base contributed at least $2.6 billion to the local economy in 2021.

JPS Health Network
7,200 | Healthcare | Search jobs
The $1.3 billion tax-supported healthcare system is anchored by 25 community-based clinics and an acute care hospital. JPS offers 17 residencies and fellowships, highlighted by the nation’s largest family medicine residency program.

Fidelity Investments
6,000 | Finance | Search jobs
With a corporate headquarters just north of town in Westlake, the Fortune 500 company hired a record 4,000 employees nationally in the first half of 2023 and 500+ of them were in Texas.

This information is derived from the most recent data published by the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce.

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