Greater Austin

Published on September 18th, 2017 | by Kate Harrington

Can Austin Win Amazon?

It’s rare that so many professionals in Austin would be buzzing about a long-shot deal, but it’s also a rare kind of announcement that has them buzzing: online retail giant Amazon will be searching for a city outside of its Seattle base to build a second headquarters.

The Austin Chamber of Commerce is preparing to make a bid for Amazon to call Austin home to that second headquarter facility.

“We’ve been getting quite a few calls,” Austin Chamber spokesperson Mike Berman told Community Impact. “We definitely want to compete for it and compete hard to win this. Austin has a lot of the attributes they are looking for: a wonderful, growing population, a very talented workforce, lots of available land, one of the nation’s fastest-growing airports.

“There’s also the synergy … with Amazon already having an operations here in West Austin. Also, they have the wonderful [fulfillment center] facility in San Marcos. They just purchased Whole Foods Market, a homegrown [business]. There’s a lot of activity here and a lot of great attributes that they’re looking for.”

Amazon’s HQ2, as the proposed development is called, would grow to include up to 50,000 employees. Amazon has said it will invest over $5 billion in construction in the new facility.

Amazon has said it wants the new HQ2 to take shape in a metropolitan area with more than 1 million inhabitants, which would keep Austin in the running: the Austin-Round Rock MSA has about 2 million residents.

The company will announce which city it picks sometime next year.

Read more: Amazon To Build Second HQ in North America

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About the Author

Kate is a former reporter, most recently for the Austin Business Journal, where she covered real estate, economic development and transportation. Since 2010 she has been running Thumbtack Communications. Thumbtack provides writing, editing and marketing services. Before moving to Austin in 2002 Kate lived in her native New England, which she still visits often to escape the Texas heat.



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