The wait is over. After more than a year of keeping the world in suspense, Amazon has finally decided the winner of Amazon HQ2, or should we say winners. The retailing giant announced that Long Island City in Queens, New York and Arlington, Virginia will split the second headquarter location.
“We are excited to build new headquarters in New York City and Northern Virginia,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon. “These two locations will allow us to attract world-class talent that will help us to continue inventing for customers for years to come. The team did a great job selecting these sites, and we look forward to becoming an even bigger part of these communities.”
Amazon is set to invest $2.5 billion and create 25,000 jobs in each location. The decision to split HQ2 was rooted in ensuring enough quality talent would be able to fill the new available roles, specifically in software development and its related fields.
On the heels of this announcement comes additional news that Amazon will open an operation center in Nashville, Tennessee with more than 5,000 jobs being created. This center will act as the East Coast hub of all tech and management functions.
When Amazon initially announced a second location, 238 cities in Canada, U.S and Mexico bid for the spot. As speculation peaked over which city would host the coveted headquarters, top contenders included Denver, Atlanta, Boston and Chicago. Yet the D.C area gained much attention as a prime candidate because of Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos’ recent home acquisition in Kalorama.
2018 has been a record breaking year for the industry titan as company stock hit $1 trillion, making Jeff Bezos the wealthiest man in the world. Amazon also became the largest company to implement the $15 minimum wage to all its employees after receiving backlash for having a median salary, just above the American poverty line for many of its employees.