Amazon, the online retail giant, is planning to open new headquarters in North America in addition to the original headquarters located in Seattle. At least 50,000 jobs and capital expenditures worth $5 billion have been promised by the retailer for the city that'll prove it has the best incentives and assets.
All mayors in all cities in the U.S. declared their bid in order to house the new Amazon headquarters. Some proved to have more promise in comparison to others.
The e-commerce company stressed that tax breaks and other incentives would be factors that they will take into consideration. Michael Hiltzik, a columnist at Los Angeles Times, said that Amazon seems to be taking advantage of local communities which are now putting together generous bids for Amazon’s new facility.
"The approach of the company is naïve, arrogant, as well as a bit cynical," said Hiltzik. "Instead of waiting to be offered bribes for it to move its new headquarters into a particular community, the company should pay for the privileges it wants to have."
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Hiltzik also pointed out that existing businesses in the city that Amazon will choose would surely face consequences.
"The communities that keep on boasting of reasonable labor costs and costs of living as come-ons would have to accept that the arrival of Amazon will push up the land values. Therefore, costs for office space and housing will increase. It will even produce an immense upward pressure towards wages," exclaimed Hiltzik. "Although that may be good for workers, it’s not good news for existing employers."
Amazon’s headquarters in Seattle caused some tension. Some local residents even called the effects on housing prices and traffic "Armageddon." In Amazon's Seattle campus, the company employs more or less 40,000 workers, who all receive great incentives and benefits.
As for Amazon, it expects to employ new executives and teams in HQ2. It will also let the existing senior leaders of the company decide whether they would want to locate the teams they are heading in HQ1 or HQ2. It may also be both. The company wants employees who are working in HQ1 to remain there but they may choose to move if they'd prefer HQ2.
According to the founder and CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, the company expects HQ2 to be equal to the headquarters in Seattle.
"HQ2 of Amazon will bring in billions of dollars worth of ongoing and up-front investments. It will also bring about thousands of jobs that pay very high. We are very excited to decide on a new home."
The company said that the second HQ could be, but it doesn't have to be: a downtown or urban campus; the same or similar layout to the Seattle campus; and a site that has been prepped for development.
The company wants to encourage communities and states to come up with viable, creative real estate options, without negatively affecting the company's preferred timeline.