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Amazon wants a second HQ – and to be wooed by potential sites


By Lisa Lacy | n/a

September 7, 2017 | 4 min read

Seattle-based Amazon wants to open a second headquarters somewhere in North America – and it wants local and state government leaders to compete for the honor of hosting it.

Amazon wants a second headquarters in North America.

Amazon wants a second headquarters in North America.

The ecommerce leviathan is clear HQ2 will be a complete headquarters and not a satellite office – but it is not clear why it wants a second headquarters.

An Amazon rep did not respond to a request for comment.

Amazon noted it has a preference for metropolitan areas with more than one million people, as well as a “stable and business-friendly environment” and locations “with the potential to attract and retain strong technical talent,” as well as communities that “think big and creatively when considering locations and real estate options.”

Amazon also said it is open to a development-prepped site.

“We want to encourage states and communities to think creatively for viable real estate options, while not negatively affecting our preferred timeline,” Amazon said in a release.

Amazon’s preferred timeline, however, is also unclear, but it said it expects to invest over $5bn in construction and grow HQ2 to as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs.

Amazon did not specify what kind of high-paying jobs will be at HQ2, but, on the website, Amazon said it wants strong local and regional talent “particularly in software development and related fields.”

Amazon has certainly been diversifying lately, expanding into groceries and advertising, to name a few additional verticals – and it has been hiring sales staff to help grow its ad business – but it is not clear what the software developers at HQ2 will focus on.

Amazon said it expects to hire new teams and executives in HQ2 and it will allow existing senior leaders decide whether to locate their teams in HQ1, HQ2 or both. Amazon also said it expects existing HQ1 employees can choose to continue working there or “they could have an opportunity to move if they would prefer to be located in HQ2.”

And, touting the $38bn it brought to Seattle’s economy from 2010 to 2016, Amazon noted benefits abound for the city that becomes HQ2’s home. For instance, Amazon estimates construction and ongoing operation will create tens of thousands of jobs and tens of billions of dollars in additional investment.

“We want to find a city that is excited to work with us and where our customers, employees and the community can all benefit,” Amazon said on the website.

In addition to HQ1 in Seattle, Amazon has more than 50 fulfillment centers in the US, including locations like: Chattanooga, Tennessee; Chester, Virginia; Dallas, Texas; Jeffersonville, Indiana; Phoenix, Arizona; Robbinsville, New Jersey; and San Bernadino, California.

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