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Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)

Greater Portland draws innovative companies and clusters that possess excellence in talent, processes, products, and services. This allows the region to attract substantial foreign direct investment. Below is an interactive map that locates companies directly impacted by FDI in the Greater Portland region.

Impact of FDI in Greater Portland

Foreign direct investment is attracted to innovative companies and clusters that possess excellence in talent, processes, products, services, and exporting. The Greater Portland region has emerging excellence in such in-demand sectors as software and clean tech/sustainability, adding to its established computers and electronics (C&E) industry and its attractive legacy sectors of metal manufacturing and wood products.

Click on the image here, an FDI Fact Sheet prepared by the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program, to gain an understanding of the importance and advantage FDI brings to the region.

Today, FDI now directly employs over 41,000 people (or 4.8% of all private employment) in the region. Watch the short video here to learn how FDI has strengthened the region's importance in global markets. 


FDI Success Stories


Foreign Direct Investment The three-step interaction between exports and FDI
Greater Portland sees the link between exports and FDI as a three-step interaction, as highlighted in the graphic here. This interaction is enhanced by an added element that extends beyond industry: Greater Portland’s unique excellence of place, which has incalculable influence on the influx of talent and the attraction of FDI. 

As firms in a region move through this cycle, the cluster matures and moves from a position of early, nascent innovation to emerging excellence and, finally, established excellence. During this maturation process, clusters often develop new innovations, spinning off new subsectors that go through their own maturation process. 

The fifty-year history of Nike, headquartered in the Beaverton area, perfectly illustrates how a lightning strike of innovation can spark a cluster rich with talent and technology that drives investment to a region and furthers innovation through spinoff clusters.


In the 20 years since this German company committed to Portland, Adidas has become a star of our athletic and outdoor industry cluster. Its North American headquarters is in the heart of the city, where 900 employees working in design, sales, operations, information technology, finance, marketing, human resources and more, contribute to its global operations.

With 200 hires just in the past year and a jobs multiplier effect thanks to its work with Portland's leading independent contractors and service providers, Adidas makes a significant contribution to the local economy. Just as important, the company cultivates a strong community presence, partners with schools and nonprofit organizations, and demonstrates its invaluable commitment to developing the next generation of talent here in Portland.

Click here to view a video on why adidas selected Greater Portland to grow their operation.  


Vestas Americas

Vestas is the only global energy company dedicated exclusively to wind energy, and they moved their American headquarters from California to the Greater Portland Region in 2002. With more than $1 Billion in US investments, and 1,200 company-wide employees, the company is a leader in identifying effective solutions towards energy independence, with their core business focused on development, manufacturing, sale and maintenance of wind power plants.

Vestas leverages the strength of its business operations by building-out a supply that builds on a strong workforce and manufacturing capacity within the regions where they operate. This creates a ripple effect that leads to additional jobs, start-up and support businesses for local growth and opportunities, with a sizeable portion of the jobs targeted towards highly educated engineers, financial proffessionals and business development. 

Click here to view a video on why Vestas selected Greater Portland to grow their operation.

Click here for additional FDI success stories from Daimler North America, Shimadzu and Simple.

Immigrant Investors

Business Oregon and the Washington Department of Commerce work with the federal EB-5 immigrant investor visa program to connect foreign investors to individual investment opportunities in the Greater Portland region. Immigration Attorneys can also assist: American Immigration Lawyers Association Oregon Chapter and American Immigration Lawyers Association Washington Chapter.

Pacific Rim Location and Connectivity

Greater Portland is geographically close to key East Asian countries and connected by rail and truck to the rest of the U.S. including the largest market in the U.S. – California. 
Greater Portland has a nonstop flight to Tokyo on Delta Air Lines, which connects to flights across Asia.
Greater Portland is well connected to Europe with a year-round nonstop flight to Amsterdam on Delta Air Lines and three summer seasonal nonstop flights on Icelandair to Reykjavik, Delta Airlines to London, and Condor Airlines to Frankfurt.  All three connect to flights across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
Air Canada has summer seasonal nonstop flights to Calgary and both Air Canada and Alaska Airlines have nonstop flights to Vancouver, British Columbia. Volaris has nonstop flights to Guadalajara, Delta Airlines & AeroMexico have nonstops to Mexico City, and Alaska Airlines has nonstop flights to Puerto Vallarta and San José del Cabo.
Greater Portland is positioned favorably in the Pacific time zone, so that at the start of the day at 8am in Greater Portland it is 4 pm in the UK and 5pm in Continental Europe, and at the end of the day in Greater Portland at 5pm it is 8am in China and 9am in Japan and Korea.

International Diversity

In Greater Portland 292,000 people, or 12.6% of the total population (close to the U.S. average), are foreign-born according to U.S. Census figures. Approximately 36% are from Latin America (mainly Mexico), 34% from Asia, 10% from Europe, with the rest from Africa, Oceania, and North America. For details please see the Greater Portland Pulse. According to US Census Bureau data, international migration amounted for 19% of the total population growth in Greater Portland from 2003-2013. 
Greater Portland welcomed approximately 1.3 million international visitors in 2014, with Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Australia and EU countries leading the way, according to Travel Portland. In addition, 4,930 international students studied at colleges and universities in Greater Portland in 2008-2012 (not counting community colleges), according to the Brookings Institution. After graduating, 58% of those students who received work authorization under the Optional Practical Training program stayed to work for a Greater Portland employer between 12-29 months, the 10th highest rate nationally, an indication of the desirability of the region as a location that attracts and retains diverse, educated, talented people.

Cultural Support

International Gardens

Language Immersion Opportunities


Chinese (Mandarin)



  • French American International School: Private 6th-8th grade curriculum is taught in French, German, Spanish, or Mandarin Chinese.
  • German International School Portland: Private preK-5th grade curriculum is taught in German.  It is one of only seven North American German Schools Abroad that is accredited by the Federal Republic of Germany’s Central Office for Schools Abroad. 


  • The International School: Private preK-5th grade curriculum is taught in Spanish, Mandarin Chinese or Japanese through the International Baccalaureate program.
  • Portland Public Schools: K-5th grade one school, 6th-8th grade one school, and 9th-12th grade one school.
  • Sakura-Kai: Private school provides full immersion Japanese language, math, and cultural education to children ages 4 and older on Thursday evenings.
  • Sheridan Japanese School: Public 4th-12th grade school offers increased exposure to the Japanese language and culture but is not an immersion school. 





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