• Nicole Herendeen

Inbound US Foreign Direct Investment Trends in 2021: What We are Watching

by Patrick Bench

Here at Benchmark Strategies, our team advises clients on public affairs, economic development, and investment promotion. Since the release of the UNCTAD Foreign Direct Investment Report (https://bit.ly/2MyOWvA) I have greatly enjoyed thoughts shared by

FDI Intelligence, Aaron Brickman, Jacobi Dettoni, Alex Irwin Hunt, and many other FDI/IPA/Economic Development Professionals.

Over the last 15 years, working in both roles as Director of FDI Business Development of the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment and as a consultant, there have been trends to watch that can point to larger outcomes.

Inbound US Foreign Direct Investment Trends in 2021: What We are Watching


The role of SelectUSA in the Biden Administration. More specifically, the impact of economic development diplomacy in the US embassies around the globe. Can new inbound FDI pipelines be built that produce new deals across multiple sectors by 2022?

State and Local Investment Promotion

The investments that State, County, and Local governments can make to retain and grow existing FDI while also promoting in other countries. In addition to COVID-19 complications, the timing of federal stimulus for states and municipalities will impact these efforts.

Global Trade Conferences

How will global trade in person conferences change now that meetings are being facilitated virtually? From manufacturing to life sciences, there are summits that bring together site selection decision makers from almost every country. Will we see these events emerge in the fall?

Expansion of the Radius of Talent Clusters

Will the view of talent clusters change when an FDI decision is taking place? If the office models of remote and hybrid work sustain past 2022, site selections will be able to expand their search radius beyond metro areas and traditional manufacturing hubs.

While there are many other trends occurring, relating to economic development and FDI, our team will be watching how these four trends impact job creation and business expansion in the year ahead.

About Benchmark Strategies

Benchmark Strategies provides expertise and execution for its clients. From public sector business development to state and municipal public affairs to economic development consulting, we have the relationships and acumen to help our clients achieve their objectives.

Patrick Bench

President, Benchmark Strategies

Patrick Bench is the Founder of Benchmark Strategies. In this role, he provides public affairs and lobbying counsel to clients. Patrick specializes in economic development and procurement advisory services. Prior to launching Benchmark Strategies, Patrick served for five years as a Vice President of Public Affairs at Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications.

Preceding Rasky Baerlein, Patrick served for five years in economic development roles in Governor Mitt Romney’s and Governor Deval Patrick’s Administrations, primarily as the Director of Business Development for the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI). During his tenure at MOITI, Patrick managed an $800M foreign investment pipeline and collaborated with over 60 foreign companies to open their North American offices in Massachusetts. In his role, Patrick facilitated bilateral economic partnerships with more than 50 countries.

Earlier in his career, Patrick held positions at the John Kerry 2004 Presidential Campaign as a National Advance Staffer and at PricewaterhouseCoopers as a Mutual Funds Pricing Analyst.

Patrick served as the Chairman of the 10th Annual WorldBoston Consul General Reception with Keynote Speaker, Former Ambassador to United Nations, Susan Rice. Patrick was the former president of WorldBoston Board of Directors and currently serves on the boards of Commonwealth Children’s Center and the Boston Irish Business Association.


Patrick has been recognized as “US 40 under 40” by the Irish Echo and is an American Council of Young Political Leaders Fellow.

Patrick is a Bachelor of Political Science graduate from Providence College, with a Master of Public Administration from Suffolk University. He lives with his wife and daughters in Boston, Massachusetts.

Linkedin: Patrick Bench | LinkedIn

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