Start of operations at 2,000-job air cargo hub at CVG Airport seals Kentucky’s role as a logistics leader

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Aug. 11, 2021) – In congratulating Amazon today on beginning operations at its 2,000-job air cargo hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), Gov. Andy Beshear said the $1.5 billion facility cements Kentucky’s role as a top U.S. location for distribution and logistics, a major industry moving the commonwealth’s economy forward.

“The Amazon Air cargo hub at CVG going live will make Kentucky the undisputed national leader in air cargo,” Gov. Beshear said. “In addition to creating thousands of direct and indirect jobs, this hub puts Kentucky at the center of Amazon’s U.S. distribution air cargo network. Across the coming years, Amazon Air will help attract more manufacturers, service providers and tech companies to Kentucky seeking to take similar advantage of our key geographic location. Congratulations and thanks to Amazon for this monumental investment in our state and workforce. We look forward to continuing the commonwealth’s longstanding and successful partnership with Amazon for decades to come.”

The Amazon Air Hub adds significantly to Kentucky’s thriving logistics and distribution industry, which employs nearly 80,000 people at 590 facilities statewide. In what was already a rapidly growing sector, online ordering throughout the pandemic supercharged demand, giving logistics and distribution companies opportunities to expand. In the past 12 months, logistics and distribution companies committed to creating nearly 2,000 full-time, Kentucky-resident jobs over the coming years with 34 facility expansions and new-location projects statewide. Those projects include nearly $285 million in private-sector investment in the commonwealth.

Kentucky’s ideal geographic location puts it at the confluence of the Northeast, Midwest and South, giving shippers proximity to key populations and centers of international commerce. Within 600 miles of Kentucky’s borders, shippers can reach more than two-thirds of the nation’s population, personal income and manufacturing operations. Kentucky’s three global air cargo hubs – UPS, DHL and Amazon Air – located at the state’s two international airports – CVG and Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport – provide businesses a fast and reliable global reach.

Amazon’s start of operations and planned job creation further propel the commonwealth’s recent economic momentum.

Year-to-date, 65-plus private-sector new-location and expansion announcements include $2.6 billion in total planned investment and the creation of 5,500-plus full-time jobs across the coming years. Through July, Kentucky’s average incentivized hourly wage is $23.47 before benefits, a 6.2% increase over the previous year.

Amazon Air’s new facility will process customer packages, manage daily inbound flights and provide thousands of jobs to the surrounding community. Regular, full-time roles at the Amazon Air Hub will offer average hourly wages of up to $19.50, with comprehensive benefits including medical, vision, dental and a 401(k).

“We are thrilled to begin operations at our Amazon Air Hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport,” said Vice President of Amazon Global Air Sarah Rhoads. “This project reflects over four years of effort, and would not have been possible without the strong support of the many state and local advocates who helped us bring this facility to life.”

Candace McGraw, CEO at CVG, welcomed the economic growth that will be created by Amazon’s new air cargo hub.

“CVG is proud to be home to Amazon Air’s primary U.S. air cargo hub,” McGraw said. “We welcome the start of Amazon Air’s operation from their new state-of-the-art facility and are pleased to partner with Amazon as this hub brings additional flights, economic growth and innovation to our region.”

Boone County Judge/Executive Gary Moore said Amazon’s activity at CVG played an important economic role throughout the pandemic and is helping Northern Kentucky’s economy recover.

“The building of the air hub provided hundreds of high skilled construction jobs throughout the pandemic,” Judge/Executive Moore said. “The Amazon Air Hub at CVG helps the airport diversify its business model by strengthening its cargo revenues thus complimenting its passenger operations. A stronger CVG enhances the region’s overall economic vitality.”

Kenton County Judge/Executive Kris Knochelmann congratulated Amazon on the opening of its air hub at CVG Airport.

“Consumers and businesses throughout Northern Kentucky and the eastern half of the United States have benefitted from the cargo capabilities at CVG throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery,” Judge/Executive Knochelmann said. “The Amazon Air Hub is an integral piece of the transportation system Amazon has developed to meet customer demands.”

BE NKY CEO Lee Crume said the Amazon Air Hub will be a tech-driver and attract new businesses to Northern Kentucky.

“Amazon is an innovator at its core – in ecommerce, in delivery and in sustainability – these qualities are exemplified and embraced in the Cincinnati region,” Crume said. “The Amazon Air Hub will anchor innovation and innovative supply chain companies in the Midwest – in Northern Kentucky – as the hub’s operations take off.”

Kentucky’s economic momentum this year includes multiple achievements in addition to corporate investment and job-creation announcements.

Last month, thanks to strong fiscal management by the Beshear administration, the state budget office reported the commonwealth ended the 2021 fiscal year with a general fund surplus of over $1.1 billion – the highest ever in the commonwealth – and a 10.9% increase in general fund receipts to $12.8 billion.

In May, Moody’s Analytics published a positive economic outlook for Kentucky, noting mass vaccination as the driving force behind a sustained recovery in consumer services. The state’s recovery, Moody’s said, benefited from earlier reopening efforts and increased demand for manufactured goods over services. The report also found Kentucky’s manufacturing industry outperformed the nation’s since the national downturn last year.

Fitch Ratings in May improved the state’s financial outlook to stable, reflecting the commonwealth’s solid economic recovery. The state’s April sales tax receipts set an all-time monthly record at $486.5 million, as did vehicle usage tax receipts at over $64 million.

In March, Site Selection magazine’s annual Governor’s Cup rankings for 2020 positioned Kentucky atop the South Central region, and third nationally, for qualifying projects per capita. The commonwealth also placed seventh overall in total projects, the highest of any state with a population under 5 million. Site Selection also recently placed Kentucky in a tie for fifth in its 2021 Prosperity Cup rankings, positioning the state among the national leaders for business climate.

A detailed community profile for Boone County can be viewed here.

Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at,, on Twitter @CEDkygov and LinkedIn.