The Denver business sector has spent the past 20 years focusing on creating a diverse economy and it seems to have paid off. According to the 2010 ALEC-Laffer State Economic Competitiveness Index, Denver has the second best economy in the nation. Brooking Institute reports the city has a strong infrastructure, increased population and growing social influence. Here is a look at the largest employers in Denver.

The health industry boasts 6 of the largest employers in Denver with 5 of them located in downtown Denver. These are Health One (fifth largest employer in Denver), Exempla Healthcare (9th largest employer), University of Colorado Hospital and The Children’s Hospital. Centura Health (Denver's 3rd largest employer) is just outside Denver in Englewood. Combined, these companies employ over 36,200 people.

The two largest retail places to work in Denver are King Soopers and Safeway. King Soopers is the largest employer in Denver jobs overall and Safeway is the 4th. Both are grocery chains and combined offer almost 28,000 jobs in Denver.

The telecommunications industry also has a very large presence with Denver jobs. Qwest Communication is the 2nd largest employer with just under 14,500 and includes locations in downtown Denver. Outside of Denver in Littleton is EchoStar Communications and Level 3 in Broomfield. EchoStar is Denver’s 10th largest employer.

The largest employers in finance and banking are Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank. Located outside of Denver in Lakewood is First Bank Holding Co. of Colorado. These companies combined offer just under 10,000 jobs in Denver.

Rounding out the list of best places to work in Denver are United Airlines (Denver’s 6th largest employer), Coors Brewing Company (8th largest employer), Xcel Energy and Ball Corp (both electric utilities), Great West Life and Annuity Insurance, CH2M Hill Companies (an engineering and architectural firm), Storage Technology (a computer hardware company), the University of Denver and Alpine Access (a business call center).

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