While often associated with images of "the rust belt" and heavy manufacturing, the Cleveland area economy has diversified to provide ample opportunity for business and professional growth. The Cleveland area is home to over fifteen Fortune 1000 company headquarters. The largest company headquartered in the Cleveland area is Progressive. Probably the most famous companies headquartered in the area are Sherwin-Williams, KeyCorp, and American Greetings.
Major business honors and awards that have been received by the Cleveland metropolitan area include:
- The Cleveland area ranked 24th among the 50 top large cities on Entrepreneur magazine's 2005 list of "Hot Cities for Entrepreneurs".
- The Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor area ranked 61st on Inc. magazine's 2006 list of "Best Cities for Doing Business" in the large cities category. The 2005 survey ranked the area 39th for the "Most Balanced Economy and Growth".
- The Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor area received a "5-Star Business Opportunity Metro" ranking from Expansion Management’s 2005 Mayor’s Challenge ranking of the "Top Business Opportunity Metros".
Diversifying beyond its traditional manufacturing base, emerging and major industries in the Cleveland area include:
- Commercial banking/financial services
- Health care/health sciences
Driven by organizations such as the world famous Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals of Cleveland, biotechnology, health care, and health or life sciences have become a major industry in the Cleveland area. Cleveland ranks in the top twenty-five U.S. cities for funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Cleveland is also home to the Port of Cleveland, one of the busiest Great Lakes cargo ports. The port annually handles 12 to 16 million metric tons of cargo and supports nearly 11,000 jobs and approximately $600 million in income. The value of imports and exports averages about $1 billion annually.
For business travelers, the Cleveland area is served by two airports:
- The Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE)
- The Cleveland Burke Lakefront Airport (BKL)
Companies with headquarters or major operations in the Cleveland metropolitan area include:
- Aleris International
- American Greetings
- Applied Ind. Technologies
- Eaton Corporation
- Forest City Enterprises
- Jones Day
- Lincoln Electric Holdings
- Medical Mutual of Ohio
- Nacco Industries
- NASA Glenn Research Center
- National City Corporation
- Parker Hannifin
- RPM International
- Sherwin-Williams Company
Business organizations/associations in the Cleveland area include:
- The Convention and Visitors Bureau of Greater Cleveland
- The Greater Cleveland Partnership
- The Northeast Ohio Software Association (NEOSA)