International Business Major in Indiana

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Indiana is a major player in global trade, with exports totaling over 28 billion dollars in 2010, according to the International Trade Administration. In fact, almost 23% of all manufacturing jobs in the state depend on exports, and more than 6,000 Indiana-based companies are involved in exporting to foreign markets around the world. Students in the state pursing international business majors are eager to enter the workforce in light of the fact that international trade has rebounded dramatically after the recent economic downturn, showing a 21% increase in 2010 according to a report prepared by the Indiana Business Research Center.

Located in the heart of the Midwest, Indiana is known as a highly productive agricultural powerhouse. However, there is more to the Hoosier state than strong agricultural production. The state is also home to some of the most important industrial and biotech companies in the country, while Northwest Indiana boasts one of the largest corridors of heavy industry in the Midwest. The towns of Gary, Hammond and East Chicago also serve as commuter cities for the major global metropolis of Chicago. Further down Interstate 65 sprawls the Benton County Wind Farm consisting of 87 wind turbines dotting the rural landscape. It is this contrast between cutting-edge energy production and rich agriculture that helps place Indiana’s diverse and vibrant economy on the international stage.

Indiana hosts dozens of tech parks and entrepreneurial incubators at over 35 locations across the state, according to the “Foreign Investment in Indiana” report prepared by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. Whether it’s international business consultants and market research analysts representing Indiana-based companies as they look to explore new markets for agricultural export, or entrepreneurs and international business managers eyeing globally minded tech start-ups, Indiana provides a diverse set of lucrative possibilities for international business professionals.

Indiana’s International Business Partners

Canada is Indiana’s largest trade partner. In 2010 alone, Indiana-based businesses exported more than $10 billion in goods and materials to Canada, accounting for almost 38% of the state’s total exports. Mexico followed with over $2.5 billion and Germany was next with over $1.5 billion in imports from Indiana. Although agriculture plays a large role in Indiana’s trade, heavy industrial products like transportation equipment comprised the largest share of the export market in the state.

International Business Jobs in Indiana

The state of Indiana prides itself on a decidedly pro-business tax and incentive environment, attracting foreign investors and foreign-owned businesses from around the world. In fact, according to the International Trade Administration, foreign-owned corporations from countries like Japan, the United Kingdom, Germany and France employed over 130,000 Indiana workers and corporate professionals in 2010.

Eli Lilly, one of the world’s largest multi-national pharmaceutical companies, is headquartered in Indianapolis. According to, the company has over 11,500 employees statewide who bring in an average of $150,952 in salary and benefits. What’s more, Eli Lilly spends over $1 billion yearly in Indiana with more than 1,300 local vendors.

British Petroleum (BP) operates the US’s largest inland petroleum refinery in Whiting, Indiana, capable of producing in excess of 400,000 barrels of crude oil daily. BP has invested almost $3 billion in building and upgrading infrastructure in the state. Other major international corporations with operations in Indiana include Honda and Toyota of Japan, as well as Nestle Global.

Companies like these with such vast global networks require the services of individuals skilled in all aspects of international business. Foreign market analysts work to identify potential markets and conduct research to optimize culturally targeted marketing strategies. International business consultants and managers implement business plans around logistical, legal and cultural protocols to satisfy requirements within foreign territories.

Making International Business Contacts in Indiana

Indiana is rich in resources for those interested in information about international business: