Economic Development

From to farm big pharm, from tobacco to the world's largest supplier of insulin, from 2,000 to 30,000... Clayton is definitely not the one-stoplight town it was 40 years ago, but it still has all of its small town charm.

We've doubled in population since 2000 and landed the single largest manufacturing investment in North Carolina state history. And we continued to be positioned for more exciting growth. Just 15 miles to Raleigh, 2 hours to the beach, and home to some of the world's largest companies, like Grifols, Novo Nordisk, Caterpillar and Bayer - Clayton is the fastest-growing town in Johnston County, which was just listed in North Carolina's Top 5 booming housing markets and is the fastest growing county in North Carolina according to the 2020 census data.

Interested in joining our booming biopharma market, home to over 10% of all of the life science jobs in North Carolina? Let our Town’s Economic Development staff help you find a home for your company right here in Clayton.

Small businesses are the heart and soul of our community and we are ready to welcome your business to Clayton. Make sure to read our “Doing Business in Clayton” guide for small businesses to help you be successful from Day 1.


That amazing growth and investment is most evident at Clayton's heart: its downtown, where the Town and businesses have successfully partnered to preserve the small-town charm with more than $20 million invested in revitalization projects in the last decade - from a booming brewery in an old cotton mill, modern offices in a 1920's Ford dealership… to jazz-infused cocktail lounges and rooftop dining restaurants in previously-abandoned Main Street storefronts.

Clayton also gets it when it comes to arts and culture, supporting inclusive and collaborative projects like the annually-rotating sculpture trail and public greenway system. The heart of downtown is our two beautifully-restored downtown schoolhouses, The Clayton Center, which serves as a performing arts venue and Town Hall. Clayton is buzzing with progressive new projects and a thriving arts and small business community - the perfect place to start or expand your business or family.