At A Glance

Oklahoma City’s Aerospace Industry

Oklahoma has been one of the world’s major aerospace industry leaders since World War II.

As one of only seven global aerospace hubs, Oklahoma’s civilian and military aviation activity accounts for $43.7 billion in economic impact each year. More than 1,100 aerospace-related companies call the state home, along with 200,000 employees. And at the center of it all is Oklahoma City.

Every air traffic controller in America passes through Oklahoma City for training. Nearly every Air Force plane in America stops in Oklahoma City for maintenance or repair. Many commercial planes have a maintenance layover in Oklahoma City. And drones are flying high and fast here.


Air Transportation

  • OKC’s Will Rogers World Airport is the state’s largest public airport
  • Will Rogers World Airport has seven carriers:
    • Alaska Air
    • Allegiant
    • American
    • Delta
    • Frontier
    • Southwest
    • United
  • Grounds at Will Rogers are home to 70 tenants employing 12,000+
  • 10 additional regional airports

Aerospace & Defense

  • Aerospace is Oklahoma’s second-largest industry
  • Economic impact: $27 billion statewide | $5 billion in Greater OKC
  • Aerospace companies: 1,100+ statewide | 300+ in Greater OKC
  • Aerospace employees: 120,000 statewide | 38,000 in Greater OKC
  • Greater OKC has the state’s largest concentration of aerospace firms
  • Tinker Air Force Base is Oklahoma’s largest single-site employer
  • Tinker houses the Defense Department’s largest MRO facility
  • OKC is key MRO hub: 78 companies employ more than 4,700

Cost of Doing Business

  • Oklahoma ranks as #1 state for lowest business cost burden
    (Anderson Group, 2018)
  • Industrial electric rates 20-30% lower than national rates


  • Quality Jobs Program — 10-year cash incentive
  • Small Employer Quality Jobs Program — 5% cash-back incentive
  • 21st Century Quality Jobs — 10-year cash incentive
  • Investment/New Jobs Tax Credits — up to 5% for five years
  • Oklahoma Aerospace Engineering Tax Credit
  • Sales Tax Exemptions for Manufacturers
  • Training For Industry Program – customized employee training


  • Greater OKC is home to 15 colleges and universities
  • Nine have aerospace programs
  • Nation’s first university (OSU) with a degree in UAS engineering
  • The University of Oklahoma will offer Aerospace MBA starting in 2020
  • Six Career Techs offer aerospace certification & training

Oklahoma City’s SkyDance Bridge features an 18-story-tall sculpture inspired by the state bird, the Scissortail Flycatcher. It’s a powerful reminder that, in more ways than one, the city is taking flight.

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