The Milwaukee Region has a long heritage of international trade and investment. It was one of the main melting pots of American immigrants: In 1890, Milwaukee was considered the most “foreign” city in the nation due to its high percentage of immigrants. The region used its European connections to forge global commerce. Local companies were among the first in the nation to realize the importance of international trade: S.C. Johnson expanded into foreign markets in 1914; ManpowerGroup went international more than 50 years ago.
Today, the Milwaukee area produces $8 billion in exports. Several international giants have their global headquarters here, including Fiserv, Johnson Controls, ManpowerGroup, Rockwell Automation and SC Johnson. The region also is home to the North American headquarters for many international corporations – including ABB, Krones AG, Chr. Hansen, BRP, Metso Minerals and Nestle – and several other foreign-based companies have a major presence in the region, including SAB Miller, Kikkomen and Fiat.
The region’s proximity to two international airports – Milwaukee’s General Mitchell International Airport and Chicago's O'Hare International Airport – its access to the St. Lawrence Seaway and its proximity to Canada have made the region a magnet for trade and investment.
The region’s businesses have been actively pursuing business opportunities in rapidly growing economies, opening manufacturing and service facilities around the globe. The Milwaukee World Trade Association provides discussion groups, trade missions, educational opportunities and specialized resources for companies seeking to establish or expand business opportunities internationally.
Milwaukee 7 Export Development Grant Program
The Milwaukee 7 offers the Export Development Grant Program to help manufacturers, companies selling a proprietary product line, and service-based companies grow in international trade. The Export Development Grant Program will award matching funds of up to $5,000 to companies in Southeastern Wisconsin, both new to export as well as existing exporters, to take advantage of opportunities in international markets and to overcome obstacles.
Milwaukee EB-5 Visa Program
The Milwaukee Region has also been designated a Regional Center for the U.S. Immigrant Investor Program, which offers green cards to foreign investors and their families who invest a minimum of $1 million (or $500,000 in targeted employment areas) in businesses that create at least ten full-time jobs for U.S. workers. The Region is the only designated investment zone for urban areas in the Midwest. To learn more click here.
FOREIGN COMPANIES WITH U.S. HEADQUARTERS IN THE MILWAUKEE REGION
|COMPANY||WORLD HEADQUARTERS||WORLDWIDE REVENUE||U.S. COMPANY||HEADQUARTERS|
|BRP Inc.||Valcourt, Canada||$460 million||BRP US||Sturtevant|
|TAKKT AG||Stuttgart, Germany||$1.2 billion||C&H Distributors||West Allis|
|Chr. Hansen A/S||Hoersholm, Denmark||$640 million||Chr. Hansen Inc.||West Allis|
|Creation Technologies Inc.||Burnaby, Canada||$300 million||Creation Technologies Wisconsin Inc.||Oak Creek|
|Gottlieb Guehring oHG||Albstadt, Germany||N/A||Guhring Inc.||Brookfield|
|Doughty Hanson & Co. Ltd.||London||$3.4 billion||HellermanTyton Corp.||Milwaukee|
|Krones AG||Neutraubling, Germany||$3.2 billion||Krones Inc.||Franklin|
|Metso Corp.||Helsinki, Finland||$6.5 billion||Metso Minerals Industries Inc.||Waukesha|
|Putzmeister GmbH||Stuttgart, Germany||$1.1 billion||Putzmeister America||Sturtevant|
|Wacker Neuson SE||Munich, Germany||$1.1 billion||Wacker Neuson Corp.||Menomonee Falls|
FOREIGN COMPANIES WITH MAJOR OPERATIONS IN THE MILWAUKEE REGION
|COMPANY||HOME COUNTRY||MILWAUKEE REGION SITES||LOCAL EMPLOYEES|
|Extendicare Health Services||Canada||Milwaukee||3,500|
|CNH Global (Fiat)||Italy||Racine||2,000|
|Wacker Neuson Corp.||Germany||Menomonee Falls||500|
|Siemens Water Technologies||Germany||Waukesha||475|
|ABB Inc.||Switzerland||New Berlin||450|
|*GE Healthcare, which is based in England, is a business unit of American-based General Electric.|