Knoxville is at the center of the Tennessee Valley Corridor, which is known for its high-tech industry. Knoxville has a diversified economy. The University of Tennessee at Knoxville, the nearby U.S. Department of Energy facility, and the Tennessee Valley Authority headquarters have important economic roles for the region. These institutions participate in a technology transfer program that has led to the creation of numerous businesses. The region also includes an unusually high number of incubator facilities.
Knoxville is the home of numerous manufacturing firms, distribution and warehousing companies and several telemarketing divisions of large companies. Knoxville also includes a thriving tourist industry due to being near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and other attractions. Other significant economic factors are zinc and coal mining, tobacco, livestock and dairy products and food crops. The professional, scientific and technical services sector and the food services industry are growing sectors for the economy.
Employment is provided by companies producing items such as manufactured housing, motor vehicle supplies, clothing, aluminum products, processed foods, plastics and pleasure boats.
Tennessee's FastTrack Training Services Program offers financial assistance for new and expanding companies and industry training. The program's representatives work with companies to create customized training programs.
The Knoxville region's largest employers:
- Covenant Health
- The University of Tennessee at Knoxville
- Knox County Public School System
- Walmart Stores
- St. Mary's Health System
- Baptists Health System of East Tennessee
- City of Knoxville
- University of Tennessee Medical Center
- Clayton Homes
- State of Tennessee Regional Offices
- Aluminum Company of America
- Denso Manufacturing Tennessee
- Food City
- Blount Memorial Hospital
- Kroger Company
- U.S. Postal Service
- Tennessee Valley Authority
- Sea Ray Boats
- DeRoyal Industries
- East Tennessee Children's Hospital
Knoxville's primary nonagricultural job providing sectors:
- Trade, transportation and utilities
- Leisure and hospitality
- Professional and business services
- Health services
- Educational services
Noteworthy information about Knoxville, Tennessee: Estimated median household income in 2007: $34,000. Cost of living index in 2008: 82.5 (U.S. average: 100). Adult population which has earned a bachelor's degree or higher: 25%.
Local companies have access to useful associations including:
- Knoxville Chamber of Commerce
- East Tennessee Economic Development Agency
- Tennessee Small Business Development Centers
- Small Business Administration - Tennessee
Local business and economic news is provided by the Knoxville News Sentinel.