Amazon kicked off its hunt for a second headquarters in September 2017, initially receiving 238 proposals before narrowing the list to 20 in January. Collectively, Amazon will still hire a total of 50,000 new employees.
The split of the second headquarters dilutes the company's original promise of a megadeal, which cities and counties had been chasing with stunts and gimmicks, investing thousands of dollars in websites and presentations.
For now, though, some New Yorkers believe that if Amazon does settle half of its second headquarters here, it will support industry trends that have been underway since the Bloomberg administration, when the city began to see its future in technology.
Venture capitalist Russ Wilcox observed that during the course of the HQ2 search, Amazon said it would lease an additional 400,000 square feet in the Seaport District; picked Boston for a new joint venture to provide more affordable health care to employees; and paid about $1 billion to acquire Pillpack, an online pharmacy based in Somerville.
More evidence: JBG Smith, a top real estate developer in that area, pulled leasing locations in that area, too, igniting rumors that Amazon will move its location to Virginia, USA Today reports. The company had been accepting proposals for its new facility, which is expected to cost around $5 billion. Cuomo has said that he expects an Amazon HQ in New York City would be an economic boon.
After a yearlong search for a second home, Amazon is now reportedly looking to build offices in two cities instead of one, a surprise move that could still have a major impact on the communities it ultimately selects.
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The newspapers cited unnamed people familiar with the matter in their reports. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio also met with Amazon executives around the same time, a city official said.
For Amazon, the HQ2 fanfare has added to a year of striking growth and significant milestones. "Memo to the genius leaking info about Crystal City, VA as #HQ2 selection". One will be the Crystal City area of Arlington, in Northern Virginia, two people said.
The fact a company like Amazon with its vast resources is asking for government subsidies irks New York University's Stern School of Business professor Scott Galloway. And before that, CEO Jeff Bezos - whose fortune is tied to his Amazon stake - became the world's wealthiest man in recent history.
"What comes out of this is that we didn't catch the big fish but we've been catching a lot of smaller fish that are easier to assimilate into our economy and our business sector than it would have been to land a big whale like Amazon". But the city "realistically" can support a split version of HQ2, he says.
The Journal listed New York, Dallas and the Washington, D.C. area as possibilities for the split headquarters.
Where are we in the decision-making process, and when will Amazon make a final announcement?In Denver, 16 percent said they were somewhat or strongly opposed to having Amazon to set up shop there.
Whatever they end up doing, it will have to happen quickly if Amazon intends to meet its goal of 500,000 square feet of office space by next year.