Arlington, VA

This article was written by Marian Marquez, Director for Global Markets & Retention at Arlington Economic Development.

Did you know Arlington is home to almost 10,000 business establishments, including thousands of small and independent businesses and four Fortune 1,000 companies?

Each year during the month of May, which is Business Appreciation Month, we try to find as many ways as possible to showcase our local businesses and highlight their contributions; after all, studies have shown (and our data supports) that existing businesses are responsible for roughly 80% of job growth in an economy.

So, it is only fitting that we should make an extra effort during this month to recognize those companies whose success and innovation have made the Arlington economy what it is today.

But this work of highlighting our local businesses is not confined to just one month per year. We carry out year-round business engagement activity at Arlington Economic Development (AED), otherwise known as our Business Retention & Expansion (BRE) program.

While BRE activity doesn’t often make headlines, it’s an important part of our economic development strategy, and we spend a lot of time and effort finding creative ways to engage local companies in ways that add value.

What constitutes “value add” is not the same from one company to the next. For companies seeking connections to potential customers, partners or decision makers we offer networking events such as the Arlington Premiere, executive lunches, industry roundtables or, simply, introductions.

For smaller companies, or those that may not have the bandwidth or in-house expertise, we offer a variety of marketing and promotional activities including ribbon cuttings, media promotion and award nominations. Similarly, AED’s business intelligence team performs ad-hoc research on everything from real estate options to demographics for companies looking to move or expand.

What remains constant is that our team is always focused on what might help our companies grow and succeed and we build our work plans based on what companies tell us they need. We are a small but nimble team with a solid track record of trailing recommendations into new programming by leveraging our creativity and our strategic partners.

We are always eager to hear new ideas, let us know yours!

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