Our region's growth in manufacturing is 6x the national average. 

When we talk about advanced manufacturing, we’re talking about companies that are building products that require advanced skills or technologies to create.

Examples include medical devices, automotive and aerospace components, military or agricultural equipment, and advanced materials.

Advanced vehicle manufacturing equipment.

Advanced Manufacturing at a Glance

The Research Triangle region has 196 advanced manufacturing companies.
There are 12,570 people employed in advanced manufacturing.
The average annual salary in advanced manufacturing is $86,000.
Advanced manufacturing contributes 2.2 billion dollars to the Gross Regional Product.
Advanced manufacturing has an annual growth rate of 4.4 percent.
Advanced manufacturing has a 5-year growth rate of 15.2%.

Don't just take it from us...

Hear from Chad Henry, Corporate VP & General Manager of Novo Nordisk, on why the Research Triangle is ideal for manufacturing.

Advanced Manufacturing Leaders Located in the Triangle

Company Highlight


Caterpillar Inc. is the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. 

The Fortune 100 company has multiple locations in the Research Triangle Region. Caterpillar manufactures wheel loaders and has a 100-acre R&D facility and a Customer and Training Center in Clayton (Johnston County), maintains an administrative office in Cary (Wake County) and manufactures skid steer loaders, compact track loaders and multi-terrain loaders in Sanford (Lee County).

“We are proud of the products we design, test and manufacture in the Research Triangle Region,” said Tony Fassino, Caterpillar Building Construction Products Division Vice President. “The area’s talented and dedicated workforce is an incredible asset to a company like Caterpillar.”

The company is a terrific example of a strong corporate citizen. Not only has Caterpillar made a significant economic impact during its 30 years in the region, but it also actively participates in the communities in which it operates, and it maintains close working relationships with nearby community colleges and universities. When you combine all of that with very attractive apprenticeship programs, it’s easy to understand why Caterpillar continues to have access to an exceptional workforce.

Team members posing for a photograph at Caterpillar's Sanford Facility.

The Sanford Facility is located in Central Carolina Enterprise Park

The Sanford facility has produced more than 275,000 machines since 1998.
Caterpillar employs more than 2,000 people in North Carolina.

Advanced Manufacturing News

John Deere picks Triad for $69.6M manufacturing plant, new jobs

August 15, 2023
John Deere is bringing 50 new jobs to the Triad, picking a Kernersville site for a nearly $70 million battery and charger manufacturing plant. A big focus will be the off-highway equipment market, according to the company. Gov. Roy Cooper announced the project on Monday. The facility will be part of John Deere Electric Powertrain […]

NC State Partner Institutes Bolster U.S. Manufacturing Industry

May 8, 2023
A strong manufacturing industry in the United States leads to steady jobs, increased gross domestic product, healthy supply chains and a secure military. Recognizing the United States’ need to compete in a global manufacturing marketplace, Congress established the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation in 2014. Known as Manufacturing USA, this network brings together academic, industry and […]

Biden visits Wolfspeed in Durham, making first stop of 3-week tour

March 29, 2023
The moment the wheels of Air Force One hit the runway at Raleigh-Durham International Tuesday afternoon marked the start of President Joe Biden’s “Investing in America Tour.” The tour is set to span three weeks and more than 20 states — and it is all kicking off in Durham. After landing at RDU, the President […]