Florida is a hub for the distribution and logistics sector, which now employs more than 150,000 people in the state. Virtually every household name in this sector, from FedEx to Hellman Worldwide Logistics, has a significant presence in Florida.
As the world becomes smaller, access to global markets is critical to distribution and transportation facilities that need to easily move product around states or the world. Florida offers a multi-modal transportation infrastructure that provides that access with 14 deepwater seaports, 21 commercial airports, two spaceports, almost 3,000 miles of rail, and 18,000 highway miles.
Florida seaports are among the busiest in the nation and serve markets in the Caribbean, Central and South America, Europe and the Far East. Cargo activities account for approximately 9 percent of Florida’s Gross Domestic Product. As global trade routes shift and re-align, Florida ports are prepared to expand international trade opportunities.
With more than 150,000 Floridians employed in almost 8,500 distribution and logistics companies, the state offers a workforce with the unique skills required by this sector. The workforce is well educated, with 44 percent holding an Associate’s degree or higher and one-third having a Bachelor’s or graduate degree, and nearly 30 percent of residents speaking a language other than English. These may be some of the reasons the state’s workforce ranked third nationally in CNBC’s “Top States for Doing Business” in 2012.