The Top 29 Companies Carrying on Detroit's Industrial Legacy

Written by Sunny Betz
Published on Feb. 02, 2022
The Top 29 Companies Carrying on Detroit's Industrial Legacy
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If there’s one city where the word “industry” holds the most weight, it’s Detroit. The Motor City has industrial ambition in its bones, and in addition to inventing the assembly line, Detroiters have originated countless new methods of doing business that have reshaped the entire American economy. Detroit is, first and foremost, powered by the automotive industry, the same industry that founded the city to begin with. But when you look past the automotive giants that lead the city’s economy, you’ll see a breadth of companies forging new paths in nearly every industry imaginable. From luxury retail to software engineering, there’s no sector that isn’t represented in some way. With so many opportunities to choose from, it only makes sense that Detroit has been named one of the top cities in the country for tech entrepreneurship.

Discover how the 29 most dynamic companies in Detroit are helping the city’s ambitious professionals achieve victory.

Top Companies in Detroit

  • General Motors
  • Quicken Loan
  • Chevrolet
  • Cadillac
  • Ally Financial
  • DTE Energy
  • MSX International
  • ServiceNow
  • General Dynamics
  • Optum
Red Ventures Largest Companies Detroit
Red Ventures

Founded: 2000

Focus: Big Data, Digital Media, Marketing Tech

What they do: Red Ventures is building stronger bonds between consumers and brands with its thoughtful and cutting-edge products. A collection of companies make up Red Ventures, which harnesses AI technology to produce high-quality and relevant content. As a result, Healthline Media, CNET, The Points Guy, and other brands have flourished under the Red Ventures umbrella and have given customers the insights they need to be sure of their decisions.  

Number of employees: 4,000


Magna International Largest Companies Detroit
Magna International

Founded: 1957 

Focus: Automotive 

What they do: Rather than wait for the future to arrive, Magna International relentlessly pursues the next chapter with its unmatched automotive products. Not only does Magna produce sleek designs, but it also develops safer and more sustainable models. Advanced sensors, cameras, and digital radars have made automated driving look effortless. In addition, Magna has crafted its share of electric vehicles, introducing crisper automobiles for customers to enjoy.    

Number of employees: 29,000+


TE Connectivity Largest Companies Detroit
TE Connectivity

Founded: 2007

Focus: Greentech 

What they do: People remain interconnected more than ever, and TE Connectivity is ensuring these connections remain secure. From automobiles to aircraft, the company plays a crucial role in maintaining essential systems. Sensors, cables, terminals, and wire protection products are just a few examples of TE Connectivity’s broad portfolio. As a result, businesses depend on TE Connectivity to keep their communications efficient and reliable. 

Number of employees: 80,000+


VMLY&R Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 2018 

Focus: AdTech, Marketing Tech

What they do: Embracing technology while maintaining a human touch can be difficult, but VMLY&R is simplifying this process for countless brands. By emphasizing data and a customer-first mindset, VMLY&R helps companies develop strategies for crafting a brand and reaching out to customers. Careless marketing efforts get lost in the stream of ads, so VMLY&R is enabling clients to stand out with campaigns that better speak to the preferences of target audiences. 

Number of employees: 10,000+


SiriusXM Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 1990 

Focus: Music, Entertainment, Sports

What they do: SiriusXM is bringing engaging content to audiences in collaboration with Pandora. Listeners can tune in to music channels that span rock, pop, country, and other enriching genres. In addition, sports fans can keep up with their favorite teams through live analysis, events, and news. Wherever one’s passion lies, each customer can enjoy a personalized experience through SiriusXM and Pandora’s platforms. 

Number of employees: 6,000+


Eaton Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 1911 

Focus: Energy 

What they do: Eaton is a multinational power management company serving people in over 175 countries with its line of power solutions, vehicle components, hydraulic motors, and other products. Whether communities require cybersecurity protection or longer-lasting battery sources, Eaton has the tools and the professionals to harness the energy needed to keep society moving. 

Number of employees: 51,000+


Ford Motor Company Largest Companies Detroit
Ford Motor Company

Founded: 1903

Focus: Automotive 

What they do: As a long-established leader of the automotive industry, Ford Motor Company continues to reimagine driving with innovative products. From the Ford Mustang to the Ford F-150, customers can select a vehicle that supports their unique needs and lifestyles. Plus, Ford has made an effort to incorporate electric capabilities and responsibly-sourced materials into its models. This adaptability has made Ford an automotive staple while catering to the next generation of drivers. 

Number of employees: 175,000+


MathWorks Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 1984

Focus: Software 

What they do: To streamline science and engineering projects, MathWorks has developed complex environments where professionals can thrive. MATLAB® makes it easy to manipulate graphics and programming while Simulink® focuses on embedded engineering systems. With MathWorks' products, STEM workers can then envision solutions for deep learning, machine learning, and other tech fields.   

Number of employees: 5,000+


Rivian Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 2009 

Focus: Automotive, Transportation 

What they do: Sustainability takes on an exciting dimension when drivers get behind the wheel of a Rivian vehicle. The automotive company is giving customers the torque and cargo space they’ve always enjoyed while crafting electrical capacity for a more environmentally-friendly ride. With the Rivian Adventure Network, travelers can replenish their vehicles during their cross-country road trips. 

Number of employees: 4,000+


The Judge Group Largest Companies Detroit
The Judge Group

Founded: 1970

Focus: Consulting, HR Tech, IT, Professional Services

What they do: The Judge Group remains a reliable partner for companies going through various transition periods. From adopting technologies to conducting staffing searches, Judge combines experience and expertise to meet the needs of each client. The company’s consultants work with businesses to determine ways to improve operations, introduce fresh processes, and welcome in new hires. As a result, every period of change becomes manageable with Judge’s guidance. 

Number of employees: 1,000+


Slalom Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 2001 

Focus: Consulting 

What they do: Revenue without direction is meaningless, so Slalom gives businesses the ability to make more intentional decisions. With experience in over 39 markets, Slalom knows how to help clients locate opportunities for improving operations and adopting the latest technology. Featuring partnerships with providers like Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud, Slalom has the resources to take business’ performances to the next level.

Number of employees: 9,000+


EPAM Systems Largest Companies Detroit
EPAM Systems

Founded: 1993 

Focus: Consulting, IT, Professional Services 

What they do: EPAM Systems has mastered a formula for shaping technology around the needs of its clients. When companies partner with EPAM Systems, they get access to multidisciplinary teams and engineers sculpted by Engineering Excellence programs. Backing its products with top-notch talent gives EPAM Systems the flexibility to address cloud security, data transformation, digital platforms, and other areas. 

Number of employees: 49,000+


Optum Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 2011 

Focus: Healthtech 

What they do: Many people may find the healthcare industry difficult to navigate, so Optum is streamlining every aspect of the industry. A convenient platform and family of sites provide digital access for patients to take care of their needs. People can complete virtual visits, mental wellness sessions, prescription orders, and more actions online. By removing the dependence on in-person services, Optum is delivering care that is faster yet still customizable.   

Number of employees: 115,000


General Dynamics Largest Companies Detroit
General Dynamics

Founded: 1952 

Focus: Aerospace 

What they do: No matter the type of environment, travelers can feel confident with the products of General Dynamics. While the company’s Gulfstream fleet carries civilians through the air, Bath Iron Works crafts durable ships for the sea. Advanced IT networks and communications systems keep everyone on the same page, enablings teams to execute missions successfully.

Number of employees: 13,000+


ServiceNow Largest Companies Detroit

Founded: 2004 

Focus: Cloud, IT, Software

What they do: To prepare workforces for hybrid and digital environments, ServiceNow has developed a comprehensive workflow platform. Companies can enhance virtual interactions with the Now Platform, which harnesses the power of AI and analytics. Employees can automate processes, access more data faster, and even construct applications with a low-code app builder. By adopting ServiceNow’s technology, distributed workforces are finding new ways to thrive.   

Number of employees: 15,000


General Motors Detroit Based Companies
General Motors

Founded: 1908

Focus: Automotive

What they do: General Motors is one of the largest automotive companies in the country, with a team of thousands of engineers who design and manufacture a wide variety of automobiles and parts. General Motors places a strong emphasis on environmental stewardship and progress, and works constantly to build new vehicles that meet the highest standards of safety and sustainability.

Number of employees: 120,000+


Quicken Loans Detroit Based Companies
Quicken Loans

Founded: 1985

Focus: Finance

What they do: Quicken Loans is a finance company that helps customers from all walks of life discover options for financial management, loan payment, mortgage signing and other financial services. Offering guides for homeowners and potential buyers on mortgage rates, refinancing, and debt consolidation, Quicken Loans encourages its clients to achieve high financial literacy and feel comfortable about their home buying process.

Number of employees: 14,000+


Ally Financial Detroit Based Companies
Ally Financial

Founded: 1919

Focus: Finance

What they do: Ally Financial offers automotive financial services including consumer financing, inventory insurance, used vehicle inventory and commercial loans to its individual and enterprise clients across the country. In the century the company has been in operation, Ally Financial has received a number of awards for its workplace culture and achievements, including being named one of the Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality in 2020.

Number of employees: 10,000+


Urban Science Detroit Based Companies
Urban Science

Founded: 1977

Focus: Automotive

What they do: Urban Science utilizes marketing technologies to help companies in the automotive industries increase their sales and ROI. Offering network planning, dealership operations management, and consumer engagement solutions, Urban Science helps auto manufacturers get their products to market faster and assures they reach as many customers as possible.

Number of employees: 700+


DMI Detroit Based Companies

Founded: 2002

Focus: Enterprise Technology

What they do: DMI is a digital management transformation company that delivers a suite of technology and software solutions to companies across the globe, serving industries ranging from e-commerce to government. DMI works with its diverse enterprise client base from multiple locations across the globe, with worldwide locations in Europe, Southeast Asia and South America.

Number of employees: 1,600+


Amrock Detroit Based Companies

Founded: 1997

Focus: Real Estate, Fintech

What they do: Amrock is a real estate company that offers tech-powered solutions for handling title insurance, property evaluations, escrow and financial settlements. Providing solutions for lenders, real estate brokers and property buyers, Amrock delivers services designed to make closing on property deals smoother with the help of fintech.

Number of employees: 1,000+


Chevrolet Detroit Based Companies

Founded: 1911

Focus: Automotive

What they do: Chevrolet builds and designs automotive products and vehicles made to stand up to modern transportation needs and lifestyles, offering a variety of sedans, SUVs and other transit vehicles for its international customer base. Chevrolet's unique design capabilities and products have earned the company an array of awards and accolades from top institutions, with its team being recognized for J.D. Power Awards, Kelly Blue Book Awards, and ALG Innovation Awards.

Number of employees: 10,000+


Cadillac Detroit Based Companies

Founded: 1902

Focus: Automotive

What they do: Cadillac manufactures and distributes both practical and luxury vehicles to an international base of clients and customers, engineering its automobiles and parts to meet the most current safety standards and environmental impact regulations. Cadillac's team designed cars integrated with the latest in greentech and AI technology, working to develop vehicles capable of hands-free driving and zero emissions.

Number of employees: 10,000+


DTE Energy Detroit Based Companies
DTE Energy

Founded: 2009

Focus: Energy

What they do: DTE Energy is a major power and energy provider serving thousands of customers and homeowners throughout the greater Michigan area. In addition to traditional power services, DTE also offers its clients the option to transition to green and solar energy sources to promote sustainability. 

Number of employees: 8,000+


More From Detroit10 Forward-Thinking Detroit Tech Companies to Keep on Your Radar


MSX International Detroit Based Companies
MSX International

Founded: 1996

Focus: IT, Automotive

What they do: MSX International supports the IT and telecommunications needs of companies in the automotive industry by connecting them with a staff of over 6,000 technology experts across the globe. In addition to technical support, MSX International's team delivers a variety of other tech related services including parts servicing, multichannel management, and customer engagement solutions.

Number of employees: 6,000


AAM Detroit Based Companies

Founded: 1994

Focus: Automotive

What they do: AAM, or American Axle & Manufacturing, specializes in engineering and building drivetrain technologies and other axle systems for every type of vehicle from passenger cars to commercial trucks. AAM offers its clients a broad range of driveline and metal forming solutions, including products like lightweight axel technology, rear axle systems, all wheel drive modules and constant velocity joints. 

Number of employees: 5,800+


Detroit Manufacturing Systems Detroit Based Companies
Detroit Manufacturing Systems

Founded: 1945

Focus: Manufacturing

What they do: Detroit Manufacturing Systems teams up with the automotive and industrial engineering industries to build and craft interior components, assembly technologies and other related products. Over nearly a decade, Detroit Manufacturing Systems has built over one million parts for its corporate clients, and the company has grown to open a new facility in Toledo, Ohio in addition to its Detroit location.

Number of employees: 1,200+


Buick Detroit Based Companies

Founded: 1903

Focus: Automotive

What they do: Buick's specialty is in building cars and SUVs designed to meet the modern standards of the road, integrating contemporary features and cutting-edge technologies to provide their customers with safe and efficient modes of transportation. The company offers a number of vehicles priced to meet every customer's budget needs, and Buick's team works to build new vehicles designed for optimal connectivity and security.

Number of employees: 800+


PVS Chemicals Detroit Based Companies
PVS Chemicals

Founded: 1945

Focus: Chemicals

What they do: PVS Chemicals manufactures industrial chemicals and other products and distributes them throughout the country via its extensive supplier network. With a focus on sustainability, PVS Chemicals provides essential materials to clients in electronics, agriculture, water treatment, steel manufacturing and a variety of other industries.

Number of employees: 300+

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