Amazon creates 50,000 jobs with split headquarters plan

Jeff Bezos CEO and founder of Amazon at the introduction of the new Amazon Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite personal devices in Santa Monica Calif. Thursday Sept. 6 2012

Jeff Bezos CEO and founder of Amazon at the introduction of the new Amazon Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite personal devices in Santa Monica Calif. Thursday Sept. 6 2012

What did NY have to offer?

New York City Council member Jimmy Van Bramer, who represents parts of Queens, was rallying opponents to the Amazon deal, claiming city and state officials offered too much in tax incentives.

"We kept asking questions and we weren't getting anything", he said.

Its New York location will be in a neighborhood of Queens that sits directly across from midtown Manhattan, while its Virginia offices will be in a part of Arlington that local politicians and Amazon are calling National Landing, a made-up area around Reagan National Airport that encompasses Crystal City and Potomac Yard.

Those offers were predicated on a single headquarters with 50,000 jobs rather than the existing split deal with 25,000 in each location, but still would have blown the NY and Virginia offers out of the water - a signal that Amazon was not willing to compromise on access to technical talent.

Who will get the jobs?

The state, the city, and Amazon pledged to kick in $5 million each for workforce development initiatives, such as technology training programs targeted at local public housing residents and high school students - which, of course, also furthers Amazon's goal of staffing up in a tight labor market.

However, Cuomo promised that the state will see a ninefold return from the 25,000 to 40,000 workers added to the city's economy and the money that Amazon will invest directly in the megaproject. The Texan city had offered economic incentives worth up to $US1.1 billion ($US22,000 for each of the 50,000 jobs).

Amazon also said it'll open an Operations Center of Excellence, which will handle the company's customer fulfillment, transportation and supply chain, in Nashville. Now, they're banking on its presence to create enough demand to benefit some of its graduates. Pursuit will operate a job-training center at the site, the organization said. "I don't know how they calculated it, and what they actually calculated", Cuomo said. The company fueled excitement about its plans by inviting cities to pitch themselves as sites for the development. "We are proud to have a partner in Amazon that shares that vision".

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"We are excited to build new headquarters in New York City and Northern Virginia", Bezos said.

The outcome "suggests that there were only two places they could go".

One city hoping that Amazon could give it an economic boost was Dallas.

Without significant investment in new affordable housing, low-income tenants could be pushed out as landlords woo the higher-income newcomers. The estimated initial tax break for Amazon looks to be $1.5 billion spread over 10 years depending on hiring targets, construction, and occupancy of their property as outlined below.

How will they get to work?

NY and Virginia beat out 18 others, including Los Angeles and Chicago, that were on a short list Amazon released in January.

To land the $800 billion, Seattle-based company, which had considered more than 230 USA cities after its search for its so-called HQ2 kicked off roughly a year ago, state officials will lavish at least $1.7 billion in subsidies and grants on the company in the richest-ever incentive package offered to a corporation in state history. Already-planned improvements coming to nearby LaGuardia and JFK International airports also will help ease the retail and shipping giant's activities.

Shares in property companies expected to benefit shot up after rumours of Amazon's selections circulated this month.

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