The Kansas City metropolitan area sprawls across parts of both Missouri and Kansas. As might be expected for a large metropolitan area, the Kansas City area has a thriving economy. The Kansas City metropolitan area is home to eight Fortune 1000 company headquarters. The largest company headquartered in the Kansas City area is YRC Worldwide, the most famous is probably H&R Block.
Historically known for beef and its large rail network, major industries in the Kansas City area now include:
- Health services
- Inter modal transportation
- Professional and business services
Helping to fuel the Kansas City economy is a well educated work force. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, almost 27% of the Kansas City population has a college degree or higher. In 2005, Central Connecticut State University ranked Kansas City in the top 15 most literate cities in the United States.
Business honors and awards received by the Kansas City area include:
- The Kansas City metropolitan area was ranked 11th among the top fifty large U.S. cities on Entrepreneur magazine's 2005 list of "Hot Cities for Entrepreneurs". Entrepreneur also ranked Kansas City tenth for "rapid growth rank".
- The Kansas City metropolitan area was ranked 20th on Expansion Management's list of "America's 50 Hottest Cities".
- Expansion Management also ranks Kansas City as a "Five Star Business Opportunity Metro".
- The Kansas City metropolitan area ranked in the top fifty among large U.S. Cities in Inc. magazine's 2006 list of "Best Cities for Doing Business". In 2004 and 2005, Kansas city ranked second for "Most Balanced Economy and Growth".
- The Kansas City area was ranked 68th on Forbes magazine's list of the "Best Places For Business And Careers" (out of the 200 largest metropolitan areas).
For business travelers, the Kansas City area is served by the Kansas City International Airport (MCI). The airport serves almost ten million passengers a year making it one of the busier airports in the United States.
Fortune 1000 companies with headquarters in the Kansas City area include:
- AMC Entertainment
- DST Systems
- Ferrellgas Partners
- Great Plains Energy
- H&R Block
- YRC Worldwide
Other companies with headquarters or major operations in the Kansas City metropolitan area include:
- American Century Companies
- Andrews McMeel Universal
- Applebee's restaurant chain
- Black and Veatch
- Burns and McDonnell
- Commerce Bancshares
- Hallmark Cards
- Interstate Bakeries Corporation
- J.E. Dunn Construction Group
- Kansas City Power and Light Company
- Kansas City Southern Industries
- Lockton Companies
- Premium Standard Farms
- Russell Stover Candies
- Sprint Nextel Corporation
- The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States of America
- Wolferman's bakery
Business organizations and associations in the Kansas City area include:
- The Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce
- The Independence Chamber of Commerce
- The International Trade Council of Greater Kansas City
- The Kansas City Convention and Visitors Association
- The Overland Park Chamber of Commerce
The Kansas City Business Journal and the "Business Section" of the Kansas City Star are good sources of information on the Kansas City area economy and Kansas City business.