Amazon's second and third headquarters will be located in Long Island, New York and Crystal City in Arlington County, Virginia.

By Daniel Herborn


Posted on November 13, 2018

The Wall Street Journal has reported two cities beat out hundreds of US locations, including Boston, Los Angeles, Nashville and Washington D.C, after a headline-grabbing and often fractious bidding process. The new headquarters will be home to some 50,000 employees.

Securing the headquarters could mean up to US$5 billion in investment and a massive influx of high-paid jobs.

Cities across the US offered tax concessions in the race to host the next Amazon headquarters

The Seattle-headquartered Amazon originally began scouting potential new locations back in September 2017.

By January 2018, it had narrowed the search to 20 finalists before recently deciding to divide its new headquarters across two locations.

The e-commerce behemoth has estimated its investment in Seattle between 2010-2016 poured in an additional US$38 billion to the city’s economy, with every dollar it invested generating US$1.40 for the city’s economy.

The company’s critics slammed it, however, for aggressively seeking tax concessions among cities competing to host its new headquarters.

Newark, New Jersey, was just one example of a city prepared to open the coffers for Amazon, attempting to lure it to the garden state with tax breaks worth US$7 billion.

Other desperate cities offered to rename themselves as Amazon, tried to send CEO Jeff Bezos a giant cactus and took out a full-page ad in The New York Times in an attempt to win favour.

Amazon required competing cities to enter into nondisclosure agreements, meaning the details of the policy and tax incentives officials offered it were not open to scrutiny.

US cities and states now devote more than US$90 billion a year to attract companies and this spending has been criticised as inefficient and an unacceptable diversion of funds away from public services and infrastructure.

Amazon had outlined broad criteria for its decision, outlining that it was seeking a city with proximity to a major airport, a strong university and a population of at least 1 million. Crystal City only has a population of around 25,000, with around 230,000 people in Arlington County as a whole.

The headquarters will be evenly split between the two new locations.

Government officials from both cities are expected to make announcements on Tuesday 13 November local time.

Header image credit: Scottish Government