Covelli Enterprises among top 100 in state

WARREN — Ohio’s Major Employers list for 2022 includes Covelli Enterprises of Warren, the only Mahoning Valley-based company to make the top 100.

The company, the largest franchisee of Panera Bread restaurants with more than 300 across eight states, has an estimated 7,100 employees in Ohio, according to the list put out by the Ohio Department of Development. It is ranked No. 46.

Covelli Enterprises got its start in 1959, when the late, Albert Covelli opened his first McDonalds franchise in Warren. The company grew to become the largest franchisee of the fast-food restaurant, but Albert and his son, Sam, current CEO, took the company in a different direction toward Panera in 1997.

The company also owns O’Charley’s Restaurants and Dairy Queens. Most recently, Covelli opened its first Oath Pizza on the Ohio Turnpike in 2020.

The top five employers based in Ohio were the No. 1 overall employer, the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, 56,986; Kroger Co., Cincinnati, 44,077 (No. 4); Ohio State University and Medical Center, Columbus, 35,656, (No. 5); Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, 33,807 (No. 6); and University Hospitals Health System Inc., Shaker Heights, 30,891, (No. 7).

Cincinnati-based Bon Secours Mercy Health, which includes Mercy Health-Youngstown’s three hospitals — St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital, St. Elizabeth Boardman Hospital and St. Joseph Warren Hospital — was No. 7 with 30,510 employees.

Second on the list was Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart Stores Inc., 55,262; and No. 3 was Seattle-based Amazon.com, 45,000 employees.

Akron Children’s Hospital was No. 57 with 6,184 employees and Kent State University was No. 64 with 5,263 employees.

The report is a list of the state’s 100 largest corporations and organizations based on a reported or estimated total headcount in Ohio. Information was obtained from either the company, estimation based on publicly available information or figures from various public sources, according to the state.


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