9/15/17

Fee fi fo fum
I seek the site of a new HQ
Bringing jobs and scouting talent
I'll make retailers know they're dead

-Appley

Jeff Bezos is looking for a new site to place Amazon's new HQ. What he's looking for?

-Urban location close to a good university
-The location has to be near a major airport
Ideally: a cosmopolitan area with an ability to gauge global trends in art, fashion, and design

The most concerning thing for Bezos is to see if he will be able to manage a unified business strategy for Amazon and avoid the firm from developing a "company split-personality"

But more importantly is the impact a new Amazon HQ will have! For sure, whichever city is chosen, the universities centered at the city will be able to greatly benefit... very much so. I wonder how this will play out?

WSO, take your pick:

Which city should the new Amazon HQ be placed in and which schools will benefit from the new presence of an Amazon HQ? WHY did you choose your pick?

Comments (179)

9/8/17

Financial Modeling

9/8/17

I give Philly low odds at best.

Taxes are high, construction costs are high, Penn is good but people aren't targeting Amazon for work, etc.

I'd look at chicago, Boston, charlotte, Atlanta.

Honestly, fuck Philly for even thinking about this. Losers in city hall don't derseve it. Cut taxes and help existing businesses before hopping for this miracle.

Btw - philly was trying to get GE to come and crowned on that. I can't see Amazon choosing PHL over other cities.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/8/17

Philly has KOZs which are very favorable for businesses (eliminating many business taxes) on top of a 10 year property tax abatement for new development. For a deal this big, I can totally see more incentives given to Amazon. Not sure if Philly has the tech talent though. I honestly think Atlanta might be the front runner.

9/9/17

I agree philly has some issues but I think you're being too negative

Construction costs are irrelevant... Brandywine is already committed to building it

Philly taxes aren't competitive but it would be in a KOZ as somebody else mentioned, which gives a bunch of corporate and employee wage tax breaks (this is being done elsewhere in UCity and the Navy Yard - another location they may consider)

I forget the exact numbers, but Amazon is looking for huge office space numbers (something like 500k SF in the near term with potential for several million in 10 years) which this provides

also a hip urban environment (I love spending time in center city and UCity has been really transforming too), very easy access to public transit, amtrak, airport, etc..

Penn & Drexel right next door (i.e. less than 5-10 minute walk) and tons of other schools within a 30 minute radius by car or public transit, the % of philly students remaining in philly after graduation has risen above 50% in the past decade and even more would stay with an employer like Amazon

philly job growth is not as bad as you say, the MSA YoY increase was on par with Boston, NYC, DC, etc and I'm sure the % is way better if you focus on Center City / UCity

Honestly, in the end, I don't really care if Amazon picks Philly. I'd love to see that city get the economic boost but I'm nervous what an influx of 50k rich tech bros would do to the culture

9/11/17

Like spending time in Center Shitty? I'll give you that University City is decent but the rest of that town has always been mediocre at best to me.

9/11/17

k

9/11/17

Philadelphia is the arm-pit of the devil's asshole. What a dump.

9/11/17

Yeah, this is a crap comment. City is great, just not on the same level as NYC, Chicago or Washington.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/11/17

I know you're bias, but I thought it was one of the dumpiest cities I've ever been in within the U.S. Spent summer of 2007 there and it was a horrible experience. Perhaps it's improved in the last 10 years.

9/11/17

A decade man. Shit changes. Yeah, it's improved a lot.

Amazing art scene, history and restaurants.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/11/17
TNA:

A decade man. Shit changes. Yeah, it's improved a lot.

Amazing art scene, history and restaurants.

Is it still overrun by homeless people, trash, and unattractive women?

9/11/17

Center city has guys specifically paid to clean the streets constantly. They have sweepers, ride on vacuum machines, etc. CC was one of the cleaner major cities I've ever seen.

Homeless people? Welcome to a big city.

Unattractive women? Subjective. City has 3 universities and a bunch of medical schools in the city (plus surrounding schools). Plenty of bars. Is philly home to the hottest women? Well that's subjective, but most likely not. The ugliest? C'mon.

So basically your decade old complaint about the quality of a city is bitching about trash and homeless people and chicks not being hot? This is a joke right.

Forget the history. Forget the amazing art at the Art Museum, Barnes or Rodin. Forget the great restaurants (Parc, Amis, Vetri, Zahav, Laurel, etc). Forget the lower COL, the ease of getting to all other major east coast cities. Forget the universities, the shore, the suburbs, etc. Place blows because of chicks not being hot.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17
TNA:

Center city has guys specifically paid to clean the streets constantly. They have sweepers, ride on vacuum machines, etc. CC was one of the cleaner major cities I've ever seen.

Homeless people? Welcome to a big city.

Unattractive women? Subjective. City has 3 universities and a bunch of medical schools in the city (plus surrounding schools). Plenty of bars. Is philly home to the hottest women? Well that's subjective, but most likely not. The ugliest? C'mon.

So basically your decade old complaint about the quality of a city is bitching about trash and homeless people and chicks not being hot? This is a joke right.

Forget the history. Forget the amazing art at the Art Museum, Barnes or Rodin. Forget the great restaurants (Parc, Amis, Vetri, Zahav, Laurel, etc). Forget the lower COL, the ease of getting to all other major east coast cities. Forget the universities, the shore, the suburbs, etc. Place blows because of chicks not being hot.

The trash, absurd number of homeless people harassing me on the streets, and ugly women are not insubstantial complaints. Those were actually direct negatives on my quality of life, not some nebulous concept about economics. As a native Washingtonian, I would assert that few residents ever actually go to the museums or monuments (that's what the tourists do)--assuming that's the same in Philadelphia (I'm almost certain it is), then it's a mostly irrelevant positive regarding quality of life.

Funny that you talk about attractiveness level of women being "subjective" and yet you assert as a fact that Philly has great restaurants, which, as anyone knows, is purely, utterly, and indisputably subjective.

9/12/17

Never noticed any more trash or homelessness than any other big city (except a few standouts like Boston which has almost no visible homeless population, or SF/Portland which are overrun). Definitely tons of attractive women in center city, and none of them are useless aspiring models/actresses/instagram influencers like in NYC/LA.

9/12/17
Ricky Sargulesh:

Never noticed any more trash or homelessness than any other big city (except a few standouts like Boston which has almost no visible homeless population, or SF/Portland which are overrun). Definitely tons of attractive women in center city, and none of them are useless aspiring models/actresses/instagram influencers like in NYC/LA.

Like I said, my experience was from 2007 when I spent an entire summer living in Logan Circle. It certainly may have improved. My point is, complaints about unattractive women and mass homelessness are not insubstantial--they directly affect one's quality of life in the way that "art museums" don't affect your daily life.

9/12/17

Got it. You should visit again sometime. The millennial population and bar/restaurant scene has changed drastically since 2007. I love it there.

Also, Logan Circle is a very office/commercial section of the city, I wouldn't want to live there either. Once you get below Market street towards Rittenhouse or Washington Square it's a much better neighborhood vibe.

9/12/17

Don't bother with this guy. Thinks world class art l, food and culture is only for tourists. Total joke.

And whenever I hear people bitch about women in a city I automatically know they didn't get laid. It's like sitting in the corner of the bar finding reasons to not approach women and then saying no one was at their level lol.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17
TNA:

Don't bother with this guy. Thinks world class art l, food and culture is only for tourists. Total joke.

And whenever I hear people bitch about women in a city I automatically know they didn't get laid. It's like sitting in the corner of the bar finding reasons to not approach women and then saying no one was at their level lol.

Fuck you, man. What's with the personal attacks on me because I didn't enjoy my experience in Philadelphia?
You don't even live in Philadelphia--you spoke with your feet. I think you just can't handle having someone challenge what believe to be true, which is why this topic sets you off.

I thought Philadelphia was a f*cking dump. I hated it. Sorry that pisses you off so much.

9/12/17

Philly sucks because:

1) taxes
2) limited financial sector jobs

Philly needs to improve:

1) development - still needs another 10-15 years of infill to be as nice as Boston from an urban perspective.

2) public transportation- philly needs to extend the BSL to the navy yard. They need double decker regional rail cars to suburbs and to alliviate the congestion on 95.

3) cap 676 and 95 on the waterfront

That's a fair complaint about the city. Bitching about bums and garbage (which every major city has) and ugly women is worthless. Philly is a major east coast city where people live and work in the city. There are tons of hot women and ugly women and everything in between.

I'm sorry, but as someone who lived in Philly for more than a summer, the culture, history, museums and food make a city something special. It's why I'd be unhappy in Denver or Oklahoma City.

Saying a food scene is subjective as a retort is bulkshit. A food scene can be judged by number of restaurants, diversity of cuisine, world class chefs, reviews and ratings. Saying residents don't go to an art museum, the opera, see plays, view history and architecture, and it's only tourists, is a massive cop out.

You didn't like Philly. Cool. People have feelings for every place. But I simply cannot give credence to an opinion so base. And I have plenty of friends who piss and moan about the quality of women whenever we go and surprisingly enough, I've never seen them with these mythical 10s.

Bring a real criticism and I will agree and discuss. Talk about trash and homeless people in a major city and I will roll my eyes.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17
TNA]
Philly sucks because:
[quote=TNA:

Bitching about bums and garbage (which every major city has) and ugly women is worthless.

I've lived all over the U.S. and have traveled all over the U.S. for my job. The homeless problem in Philly was the worst I've experienced, not just because of numbers but because of the aggressive levels of harassment I incurred while simply walking anywhere. I've never dealt with that level before or since literally anywhere else in America. That's not a "worthless" complaint. It was a real f*cking problem that negatively impacted quality of life.

TNA:

Philly is a major east coast city where people live and work in the city. There are tons of hot women

I didn't see "tons" of hot women, even relative to Grand Rapids, Michigan or Kansas City. But you're entitled to your subjective opinion.

TNA:

I'm sorry, but as someone who lived in Philly for more than a summer, the culture, history, museums and food make a city something special. It's why I'd be unhappy in Denver or Oklahoma City.

I went to a lot of Philadelphia museums, too, because I was a tourist...That's generally how it works.

TNA:

Saying a food scene is subjective as a retort is bulkshit. A food scene can be judged by number of restaurants, diversity of cuisine, world class chefs, reviews and ratings. Saying residents don't go to an art museum, the opera, see plays, view history and architecture, and it's only tourists, is a massive cop out.

Literally everything you're saying here is subjective. I'm not disputing the Philly food scene, just pointing out your obvious hypocrisy.

By the way, Philadelphia may have "culture" but so do many U.S. cities that are far nicer cities. Even if 2017 Philadelphia is a great city, that doesn't necessarily make it a top flight target for relocating one's life or business.

9/12/17

You've never been to NYC, Chicago or your own city. DC has bad homeless issues. Chicago is horrible. Philly has them as well.

Philly, one of the largest cities in the US, has less hot women than Grand Rapids. LOL, sure man.

I lived there and went to the museums. New art exhibits all the time. I went to the opera, saw the theater. Loved the Barnes.

Phillys food scene isn't subjective. It's quantifiable. What's subjective is bitching about women.

Yawn. I am tired of this triviality. Cool, you don't like Philly. I never said it surpassed my NYC or Chicago, but your complaints are comical. Go enjoy all the dimes in Grand Rapids and the amazing delicacies in the 4 star restaurants you frequent lol.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

Why are you soo triggered man? lol One persons opinion shouldn't impact you this much.

9/12/17

You confuse having a discussion with being "triggered".

Posts like this are worthless. It's called a discussion and debate because two parties have differing opinions. Don't like it, don't post.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

You confuse having a discussion with throwing a temper tantrum. This is not a thoughtful discussion or debate, this is somebody desperately seeking another sad, imaginary "win" for themselves on an anonymous forum. Get a grip man.

9/13/17

Just reminding you that you typed this, since you are telling someone to "get a grip man"

Schreckstoff:

You have to be in either high school or college. You can't be this small, scared, and delusional and actually function in the real world.

Literally told me I "couldn't exist" or some shit because I beat you in an argument, now you are telling someone else to get a grip... jesus christmas

9/14/17

Looks like that's still searing huh. Listen dude, you made baseless post that was sopping in unfettered hysteria and fear-mongering. Not being hyperbolic, it was literally one of the dumbest posts I've read on this site. When you post something that implies a subsect of the U.S. population wants to slaughter hundreds of millions of Americans because of their political affiliation then you're severely deranged and a dreg to society.

Debating semantics with you is like pointing out a typo in Mein Kampf: It's a minor, gratuitous criticism of something that is overtly disgraceful. But, since you've shown yourself incapable of figuring it out for yourself I will clarify for you. There is a difference between functioning and existing. You can exist in society, without functioning highly, or even at all, as you continually demonstrate with posts like these.

Go read a book and lick your wounds elsewhere.

9/14/17

I can't believe you are this mad you lost an argument on the internet...

Really no reason you have to take out your anger about being wrong on us here at WSO...

9/12/17

Such a joke.

Homelessness

https://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2016/11...

On a per capita basis:

1)NYC
2) LA
3)Seattle
4) DC - your hometown bro
5) San Fran

8) Philly

You are wrong.

Food

https://www.zagat.com/b/the-26-hottest-food-cities...

Philly - #8 (DC is #1 btw)

http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/style/2015/12/21/...

Philly - #6

You are wrong, again.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

That Zagat list is kinda garbage. New Orleans not in the top 5? Detroit and Birmingham before any TX city (lol)? Austin the 1st TX city? NY at 21? SF at 20? Total joke list. This argument between you two is funny though.

9/12/17

a more respectable food statistic would be the 2017 James Beard awards for best chef and best restauranteurs both going to Philly guys.

Either way this argument is dumb.

9/12/17

Don't diss Birmingham. People in the south know how to eat.

9/12/17

I'm not dissing anything, I'm from the south and agree that the south has the best cuisine in general. There is no way in blue hell Birmingham is a superior food city to Houston, NY, SF, Chicago... I mean come on.

9/12/17

Haven't been to SF, but NY, Chicago, and Houston all have more and better higher end restaurants than Birmingham. However, through the mid-range and entry-level Birmingham is definitely better. I can only think of one restaurant here that I wouldn't go back to.

9/12/17

As always, you bring nothing to andiscussion.

The point wasn't to highlight that Philly has a better food scene than another city. The point was to highlight that the quality of a cities culinary options is quantified and can be supported.

As usual, you miss the essential point.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

You need to chill, smoke a bowl or some shit. I wasn't disagreeing with you as idgaf about the merits (or lack thereof) of Philadelphia, just saying that the Zagat list seems garbage.

9/12/17

And saying their list is trash is a subjective assessment.

Zagat is respected in food and travel. Their ranking is an independent, supportive verification that food quality is something one can qualify. I also posted another course confirming their findings.

The point isn't that Philly > others. The point is that quality of a food scene is t subjective, like attractiveness of women.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

Do you have friends in real life? Cause you sure seem like a fun person to hangout with.

9/12/17

why are you arguing so adamantly after admitting your opinion is based on living in a bland section of the city for a couple months 10 years ago? This is like watching the pilot of a 10 season TV series and going on an online forum to argue why you hated the show. Center City Philadelphia has changed more in the past 5-10 years than the previous 50 years combined. This is a waste of time.

9/12/17

Can't wait for the cries that I'm subjective when I drop hard facts.

It's absurd. City needs to change to really go to the next level, but it's still a great place to live. If they cut the wage tax and focused on being pro business and growth, the city would crush it. Two waterfronts, an hour and a half from NYC and DC, hour or so from the beach. Great schools and lower cost of living for a truly urban experience.

And who doesn't love cheesecakes, Dinics, pretzels and throwing snowballs at Santa.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

My 9 year old niece articulates better reasons to dislike someone. You lived in a business area and didn't get laid. Your problem, not the city.

And the fact you don't like good food, good art, good history just says urban cities aren't for you. It's cool. My buddies back home love Applebees. But I also don't listen to their culinarily opinions.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

Sure man. DC is utterly full of homeless people.

I mean listen, phillys resturaunt scene isn't subjective. It's great. As for natives not going to the museum, that speaks plenty on you. I lived there for 7 years and actively went to all the museums, the opera, etc.

if you like hotdogs then I suppose philadelphia won't satiate your tastebuds. Rest of your comments are a joke.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

I live in Sioux Falls, SD.

Sioux Falls is the ABSOLUTE best city in the US. It has the most fun & happening downtown bars full of young people, world-renowned restaurants, no homeless problem, extremely low cost of living, hottest women this side of Canada, a truly urban experience, and great views of the ocean.

If you disagree, your opinion is wrong and it is probably because you never got laid when you visited Sioux Falls with your family for 1 day. Virgin!

9/8/17

Hoping for Philly but this city can't stay out of its own way.

I'm guessing Atlanta.

9/8/17

Agree. I was ripping into some RE people who were defending the city. Philly has seen the slowest job growth of any big city, in the middle of the longest recovery in recent history. Wage tax, net profit tax, business income tax, sales tax, bullshit regulations, costs to buildnis on par with NYC when it should be in par with Baltimore. Joke.

I tore into the animals that inhabit city hall as well as they celebrated the soda tax being passed. Was told to leave philly cause they didn't want me. Funny since my wage tax was about 5-7x what they paid.

Love the place but it's so myopic and provincial.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/8/17

We miss your pragmatic views. I get the "negadelphian" moniker for pointing out the same flaws. Can't fix this place without admitting what's wrong with it.

9/8/17

Love it also. You're negative for pointing out that loser Kennedy focuses on virtue signaling instead of passing actual pro growth policies.

City is awesome but a total joke. NYC can have a wage tax. Philly can not.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/8/17

Chicago... middle of the country, biggest airport in the country, UChicago, UIC, DePaul, Loyola, bunch of other schools

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

9/11/17

I really think Chicago would have good chance due to meeting a bunch of the criteria - Airport access, Undergrad and MBA schools like Northwestern, UChicago, U of I (Computer Science/Engineering), chicago summers/atmosphere great for retaining young workforce

9/8/17
9/8/17

Bentonville, Arkansas.

Only two sources I trust, Glenn Beck and singing woodland creatures.

9/15/17

They already said no to Amazon, through a public statement. Culture issues.

Former fake Frank Quattrone
youtube.com/watch?v=ytJ9xMqc6uI

9/8/17

Dallas will win.

Our schools are great for Supply Chain, Computer Science, Technology, even business related stuff.

Also with Toyota, Liberty Mutual, Jamba Juice, and others are bringing HQ's down here or at least their second/third hubs are moving down here.

Great tax benefits here in Texas, and Frisco/Plano is doing crazy things to attract these people and talent.

"It is better to have a friendship based on business, than a business based on friendship." - Rockefeller.

"Live fast, die hard. Leave a good looking body." - Navy SEAL

9/9/17

Sorry but Dallas doesn't have world class university, great/good city otherwise.

9/10/17

SMU/TCU, UTD is great for computer science and supply chain management. Not that far from Austin (easy to recruit from there) and A&M nearby. I think it'd be a better option to do Dallas instead of Austin just because of the already packed tech ecospace down in Austin.

"It is better to have a friendship based on business, than a business based on friendship." - Rockefeller.

"Live fast, die hard. Leave a good looking body." - Navy SEAL

9/11/17

None of the schools you mentioned are world class universities...solid schools but not world class like Chicago or Boston

Financial Modeling

Best Response
9/9/17

Amazon's decision to open a second corporate headquarter is not surprising. It is long over due. Here is why.

  1. Amazon has maxed out on Seattle property and space. The firm already has 33 office buildings housing 40K+ employees, a staggering figure given that the entire city's population is just 700K. And nearly all the office buildings are clustered in a fairly small part of the city, which has resulted in traffic, congestion (try going to Chipotle on Westlake Avenue during weekday lunch hour), and higher rent.
  2. The Seattle city council is now run by socialists. They are certainly not business friendly and hate Amazon with a passion. The environment will only get worse, and it's time to hedge the downside risk.
  3. Human capital is a problem. Don't get me wrong. Amazon hires plenty of smart talented people, but given the size, importance, and prestige of the firm, I think it is under achieving here. To put it bluntly, with the exception of some MBAs, graduates of elite programs do not in general want to live in Seattle. This is particularly true for college graduates. Imagine you are a CS or economics student at say Harvard/Stanford/MIT undergrad. You have a plethora of options to choose from across tech, consulting, finance. Location is going to be important, as you want to be with your classmates and other graduates of elite schools. You also want to live in a fairly exciting city with great nightlife and social scene. This automatically excludes Seattle. The location is a tough sell.

Given these issues, what cities make sense for Amazon's HQ2? I think a handful stand out. I will iterate the pros and cons of each city.

Austin, Texas

Pros: 1) No state or city tax, 2) good weather, 3) Bezos has strong personal ties to Texas, 4) robust tech ecosystem and talent, including UT Austin.

Cons: 1) It's in fucking Texas, 2) no public transportation or ride sharing services, 3) mediocre airport.

Chicago, IL

Pros: 1) world-class city but fairly cheap, 2) growing tech and incubator scene, with Mayor Rahm Emmanuel aggressively courting companies, 3) tremendous human capital, with access to UChicago, Northwestern, and UIUC as well as other BIg 10 schools with strong engineering programs, 4) no problem drawing talent, as Chicago is an amazing city, 5) O'Hare airport provides easy access to the rest of the country and non-stop flights to almost every major international city, 6) 2nd best public transportation in the U.S. after NYC.

Cons: 1) weather, 2) State and the city are broke, so it's uncertain whether Amazon can get generous tax credits.

Toronto, Canada

Pros: 1) One of the fastest growing tech hubs in the world, with leading experts in machine learning and AI, 2) beautiful world-class city, 3) easy access to NYC and the east coast, 4) Canada is very friendly to H1-B Visa immigrants, which is highly relevant in today's political climate.

Cons: 1) potential bad PR if Amazon bases its second headquarter outside the country, 2) harder time drawing top American talent, as they may be reluctant to live in Canada, 3) Trudeau government may not be as generous with tax credits and subsidies.

Boston, MA

Pros: 1) Harvard and MIT, 2) very active and mature tech sector, including biotech and VC, 3) gives Amazon a strong presence in one of America's best educated cities, 4) no problem drawing top talent.

Cons: 1) fairly high cost of living, 2) mediocre public transportation and airport, 3) not much real estate available and strict building regulations.

Fairfax County, VA

Pros: 1) one of the most educated and affluent counties in the U.S; enormous human capital, 2) close access to D.C. would make sense given Bezos' ownership of the Washington Post and burgeoning interest in politics, 3) Amazon lobbyists can effectively pressure politicians, 4) pretty good airport in Dulles.

Cons: 1) D.C. and its suburbs are expensive, 2) lack of a robust public transportation system, 3) excessive media attention due to proximity to the nation's capital, 4) bad traffic.

9/11/17

Keep hating on TX while the state's population and business growth are explosive. Lol at "it's fucking Texas" being a con, that is the Proest of Pros bro. Can't wait to revisit this thread when AMZN announces their 2nd HQ is going to be in Dallas or Austin.

9/11/17

People undervalue Texas, but I'd give it less than 20 years and it'll be up in the top 5 places to be (at least for Tech).

"It is better to have a friendship based on business, than a business based on friendship." - Rockefeller.

"Live fast, die hard. Leave a good looking body." - Navy SEAL

9/11/17

Dallas is already rated by numerous publications as a top 5 place for business. Let the east coast elitist fucknuggets live with their frozen tundra, massive cost of living, and ridiculous taxes.

9/16/17

SB for tundra comment.

9/15/17

Disclosure: I live in Dallas

Even if we could, which we won't because our public transport blows and you're lying to yourself if you think Dallas has world-class calibre education, I wouldn't want them. State Farm and Toyota are completely consuming North Dallas as is. We're in comparatively good economic shape as a city; share the wealth with other cities and keep my commuting time on the highways nice and manageable :)

9/15/17

I'll counter your point on Chicago weather: Yeah, it's cold in the winter and there's snow. But guess where there are never natural disasters, 110 degree heat, water rationing, evacuations...

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

9/16/17
GoldenCinderblock:

I'll counter your point on Chicago weather: Yeah, it's cold in the winter and there's snow. But guess where there are never natural disasters, 110 degree heat, water rationing, evacuations...

No one is going to defend Chicago winters, but look, when it's super cold out, you man up, wear a thick jacket and get to work. Blizzards suck, but it's not a threat to our property or safety. I would rather have super cold winters than be prone to hurricanes.

Weather aside, Chicago has very few weaknesses and pound for pound, is America's greatest city.

9/9/17

Toronto is gonna bring home the ship baby. They're already hiring tons of UWaterloo and U of T kids, but it costs them a fortune to send them all the way to Washington. Not to mention it's a world class city meeting all of the other reqs.

9/10/17

My view is that there is 0% chance Amazon locates this HQ outside the U.S. Amazon is already under huge political pressure for destroying tons of traditional retail jobs. I can't see them taking on such a self-inflicted wound as locating a N American HQ in Canada.

9/10/17

Agreed, I just like to be optimistic :(

9/12/17

We already missed the boat on having their data centre here thanks to Wynne and her electricity costs...plus my guess is it's much easier to get top-tier Canadian students to relocate stateside than vice-versa

9/15/17

Just for the tech talent, it's a good play + the city/province really wants to bring Amazon here. Hopefully, they would be committed to Canada expansion so we can get some good shit...

9/9/17

My guess is odds in this order:
Boston
Toronto
Raleigh
Atlanta
Texas of some sort (don't hate...i'm originally from Texas and Oklahoma; Austin would be the first choice but the airport sucks harder than a freshman cheerleader at a frat party; Houston/Dallas which are about even)
Pittsburgh

9/15/17

best comment so far. only thing I'd change is removing toronto and putting atlanta over raleigh.

boston checks all the boxes, only question is how much RE will they need. this is my bet.

ATL likely has the space, has the transportation needs, but I doubt has the talent. Georgia Tech/Emory don't compete with UNC/Duke/NCSU much less MIT/Harvard for what Amazon wants.

raleigh has the tech talent (unlike Charlotte), has the land, has a good airport (efficient but small), but not a great airport. doesn't have the mass transit (every time I drive through, it's all highways and ubers, no train system to speak of), but cost of living is best out of the list.

I understand the argument for texas, but I'm unfamiliar with the state so I don't know where they'd go. if you're thinking Houston or Dallas, well those airports are some of the best, but for tech talent I'm betting they're lacking when compared with boston and the research triangle.

it all comes down to who gives bezos the best blowjob and what on their list they value more.

wherever they land, I just hope it's southeast, cause you better believe brofessor wants some AMZN executives as clients

"The four most dangerous words in investing are: 'this time it's different.'" - Sir John Templeton

"The investor's chief problem - and even his worst enemy - is likely to be himself." - Benjamin Graham

9/15/17

Is 161 acres 5 minutes from Downtown Boston and 2 train stops away from the financial district enough for Amazon in Boston? This is a massive old 161 acre former dog racing property in a quickly gentrified and majority hispanic and cheap part of Boston, right next to Boston. Amazon wants 50,000 employees and 5 million of square feet (im assuming counting vertically as well). Is this enough?

https://www.bizjournals.com/boston/news/2017/09/14...

We're not lawyers. We're investment bankers. We didn't go to Harvard. We Went to Wharton!

9/15/17

Are top students really going to work for Amazon??? Google, sure. Uber, yes. But Amazon? Maybe in their corporate development office, but elsewhere? What revolutionary tech are they rolling out. Poop scooper shipped by a drone?

Company needs bodies. I can definitely see Gtech, GSU, UGA, Emory, etc all clamoring to work there.

http://www.businessinsider.com/best-schools-to-get...

This is dated, but look at those schools.

https://qz.com/636539/amazon-is-hiring-the-most-mb...

Look at Amazon gobble up those MBA's. And look at those other companies not hiring MBA's. Hmmm, because Amazon is tech Walmart and those other companies are hiring actual tech people and not fluffy and stuff.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/9/17

SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA

9/10/17

Boston. Deep talent in the NE corridor.

9/10/17

Nashville. Already a strong hipster population that would worship the second HQ as a holy shrine.

9/11/17

Nashville is becoming what Austin used to be before it started taking itself too seriously. Downside is that public transit blows, however I hear many employers are offering "drivers" as a perk to lure talent from big cities.

9/11/17

I think Charlotte has to be a favorite...

Also would not be surprised to see a big Uptown Dallas campus.

9/11/17

Atlanta

9/11/17

Agreed

9/11/17

Heard Detroit is booming

9/12/17

The issue with a lot of the smaller or 'less elite' cities is that top engineering grads aren't going to want to move there. You can talk about how amazing the business climate is in Texas or how Nashville/Atlanta/Raleigh/etc. are booming all you want but it doesn't change this reality.

A big part of the draw to living in in a more concentrated tech center such as SF/NYC/Seattle is that it's extremely easy for software engineers to leverage a higher salary at the company across the street. In Seattle, people often go from amzn to msft to amzn to msft every two years getting more and more $$$ after each move.

If they put their HQ in a place where the tech market isn't as saturated they simply are not going to attract the most talented and ambitious engineers who will make their new HQ even worth investing in. As someone from a technical background, I get literally dozens of recruiters per week emailing or calling me to ask if I'm interested in pursuing new opportunities. I don't have to do any work at all on the job front if I don't want to.

Amazon has a choice: it can put it's HQ where it will be by far the dominant employer in technology and have lower turnover but more mediocre talent. Or, it can put it in a more tech concentrated city and compete for the talent that will truly drive forward their business.

Bezos is smart. I'm guessing it will be Boston.

9/12/17

This might be true but... Austin is already a tech hub.... the city is already overflowing with engineers and tech companies.... can't speak on Nashville/ Atlanta/ Raleigh.

9/12/17

Maybe. A quick look at my suggested jobs on LinkedIn in Austin just now did not seem very promising. Not many positions that seemed to appeal to my interests (data science, etc.). A smattering sure, but still doesn't seem like the critical mass required to bring in a second amzn hq. Maybe Bezos will try to be a leader there. I grew up on the west coast and went to school in the east coast. Austin in my mind always registered as a local tech hub. Nobody I knew from school or from work moved to Austin if they didn't have pre-existing ties to Texas. Perhaps that will change. I've been meaning to visit Austin as I've heard many good things.

Nothing against Austin at all, just trying to shed some light on some things that top engineers consider when choosing where to live and work. I think it's possible that the existing biases/ignorance towards Austin among engineers nationally may prevent Austin from being an ideal place for their HQ at this point in time. While I'm sure they would do a great job hiring from the UT schools, which obviously have fantastic engineering programs, it is unclear to me whether Austin would be a big enough draw for engineers who have the option to work at Google/FB/etc. in SV.

9/12/17

https://austin.curbed.com/2017/6/15/15801004/faceb...

https://www.bizjournals.com/austin/news/2017/04/12...

Facebook has a large office in Austin (a family friend works there)... I believe google does too. I'll defer to you though as I am not an engineer nor a quant.

9/12/17

Yeah, I know. If we were talking about a satellite office, sure. But this is for supposedly an HQ of comparable scale to the Seattle HQ. Article cites 900 fb employees. There was a paywall for the Google one so couldn't read that one. General point is that the scale of what Amazon is trying to do might be outside the scope of Austin's current draw for technology talent. I could be wrong but we'll see.

9/12/17

Amazon is more than just a "technology" company at this point. It's in consumer products, logistics, media, AWS/web services, and the grocery industry (among many others - but those are the biggies). It's more than software engineers and it's easy enough for those roles to stay in Seattle. What they need to do is revisit the way they have structured their corporation as a whole.

Whole foods is headquartered in Austin and will make up ~11% of it's revenue. For talent in consumer products they could tap resources from Dell, Qualcomm, AMD, etc. - swap some widgets for others and best-in-class inventory management is just inventory management. Then you move on to the logistics and the best-in-class talent would be in Memphis, Atlanta, Dallas, or Southern California. 3 of the 4 are a couple of hours away - not hard for most people to relocate, none of which are anywhere near Seattle. For AWS/web services - you can keep that at the original HQ. Most of their competition is in NorCal anyways. Then you're left with Media: most of the talent they will need is either going to be at one of the large conglomerates or Netflix, currently based in LA, NY, or Atlanta. You can probably bribe them with generous stock and low-state tax as all three have very expensive COL.

My opinion is that if you step outside the "Software Engineers and Seattle" talk track, other areas start to look a lot more attractive. I agree with you that Seattle is one of the best places for that talent though.

9/12/17

Yeeeee, Texas baby! I like this take.

9/12/17

I see what you're saying, but don't necessarily see this as a pro-Austin argument given that it's predicated on poaching large sums of necessary talent from other regions. Plus the population of the Austin MSA is minuscule (relative to competition) at 2 million people. 50,000 jobs at 2.5 people per household would literally constitute a 6.25% increase in population in the entire Austin MSA, which is ridiculous. There's simply nowhere near the critical mass of humanity in the Austin MSA to fill positions.

9/12/17

This is true but the reason that Amazon has become so dominant is the fact that technology and data underpin nearly every aspect of their business. That will continue to be the case. Traditional logistics/media talent may not be as relevant to Amazon's future as you might think.

9/12/17

Saw an interesting NY Times article that broke it down to a final 3 of Boston, Denver, and greater Washington, concluding ultimately to Denver. Interesting breakdown of criteria, but I think it will ultimately come down to the corporate welfare offered.

Rather than offer Amazon billions of tax incentives, states/cities would be better off lowering their tax burden across the board--I think they would end up with more bang for the buck and better distributed results.

9/12/17

lol yea if it comes down to corporate welfare Texas is definitely not getting that. We just don't do stuff like that nor do we need to, let the desperates have at it.

9/12/17

I'm not particularly familiar with how these tax incentives work. I don't have a quantitative argument here as a result but to me, the HQ is only worth it if it allows Amazon to continue to hire at a similar talent threshold.

All the tax credits and corporate welfare in the world are useless if you can't hire anyone worth hiring.

9/12/17

Amazon wants it all. They want Boston, Denver, or D.C.-type areas to give them countless dollars. We'll see what they ultimately find most important. I doubt they'll be able to get it all. I wonder if they compromise (e.g. Pittsburgh) or if they say f*ck it and just go with the most talent (Boston, D.C.).

9/12/17

You joking? Rick Perry's main job was handing out money to corps to move to Texas.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/03/us/winners-and-l...

https://www.texasobserver.org/texas-largest-corpor...

9/12/17

From the NY times article:

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/09/09/ups...

Boston Mayor says they are not interested in getting into a bidding war for Amazon.

9/12/17

Well, it wouldn't have to be in Boston proper, right? Could be in Waltham, Somerville, etc.

9/12/17

True. Would the state of Mass be willing to give a bunch of corporate welfare? I honestly don't know.

9/12/17

I'd put my money on Atlanta.

9/12/17
DetRustCohle:

I'd put my money on Atlanta.

One can only hope. Certainly checks the boxes for major airport and solid universities (Emory and GT) plus they just picked Atlanta for a new logistics hub.

Amazon put millions of dollars into Seattle's public transit system too. I would love that for MARTA.

9/12/17

Dear God, MARTA needs every cent. Such an outdated transit system that needs major expansion. Being the city constantly has incredibly congested traffic, it will never become an international hub with its current public transportation system.

9/13/17

@CRE I know you've said previously that you're in the Atlanta market, but what are your thoughts on how Atlanta stacks up next to Charlotte with respect to the HQ2 decision? I feel like other than horrible congestion Atlanta is an obvious top 3 pick for various reasons. But I also feel that Charlotte has a lot going for it as well (cheap RE and labor, a lot of growth, great "last mile" location, Amazon has a couple very large warehouses coming/there already in Concord and Kannapolis). Just curious to hear what you think since publications aren't really mentioning Charlotte as a contender

9/14/17

@ThatGuy111 Atlanta is a national city, not a regional city, and has better sports teams.

Hah, honestly though, Charlotte is a nice place and I have no idea what Amazon's decision making process is.

9/15/17

Charlotte doesn't have much of a transportation system, only has Davidson from a university perspective (you could argue they'd draw from Duke/UNC/Wake/etc), a mid-level airport, and next to no natural tech/retail/media talent bases.

Don't see them having any chance at this.

9/16/17

So they move to Atlanta, buy CNN and replace all advertising with "farm fresh Amazon echo" and Whole Foods ads.

9/12/17

Chicago would be the most logical choice. Third largest city, largest airport, major shipping and rail hub, and strongly established manufacturing, finance, and education sectors. Also, it's a big city with plenty to do much like New York.

Winters suck, but it's not any worse than Toronto, Detroit, Milwaukee, Calgary, or Cleveland.

My second guess would be Dallas.

"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn
9/12/17
Yankee Doodle:

Chicago would be the most logical choice. Third largest city, largest airport, major shipping and rail hub, and strongly established manufacturing, finance, and education sectors. Also, it's a big city with plenty to do much like New York.

Winters suck, but it's not any worse than Toronto, Detroit, Milwaukee, Calgary, or Cleveland.

My second guess would be Dallas.

The state of Illinois is on the brink of fiscal ruin. There is zero chance they will get HQ2.

9/12/17

Mike Madigan needs to be impeached.

"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn
9/15/17

Perhaps you don't know why Chicago is called the windy city...

In '01, Boeing moved its HQ from Seattle to Chicago. Various suburban HQs in the Chicagoland area are also moving into the city. Companies need talent in large quantities, suburban locations or smaller cities can't provide "culture" for 50k employees making $100k/year. Only a handful of cities in the US can offer that. If Boston is out of the running, I give Chicago a 50 delta in large part because there are several parcels of land available for development (west of Sears tower and near "Lincoln Park" area, not including south of the loop where a lot of venues for the Olympics were going to be built).

9/15/17
kimbo:

Perhaps you don't know why Chicago is called the windy city...

In '01, Boeing moved its HQ from Seattle to Chicago. Various suburban HQs in the Chicagoland area are also moving into the city. Companies need talent in large quantities, suburban locations or smaller cities can't provide "culture" for 50k employees making $100k/year. Only a handful of cities in the US can offer that. If Boston is out of the running, I give Chicago a 50 delta in large part because there are several parcels of land available for development (west of Sears tower and near "Lincoln Park" area, not including south of the loop where a lot of venues for the Olympics were going to be built).

Chicago and the state of Illinois are teetering on the brink of bankruptcy. Nobody really thinks Chicago (or anywhere in Illinois) is anywhere in the running for Amazon HQ2. They literally don't have the money to give away to Amazon. And I have nothing against Chicago (I'm in the process of trying to acquire a $340 million office building there), but Chicago does not provide Amazon the sovereign stability that it requires. It also doesn't provide the robust economy that Amazon says it wants (it's not a terrible economy, but there are many more large metropolitan areas with much more robust economies).

Chicago actually has the worst job growth of the 12 largest metropolitan areas:

https://www.bls.gov/regions/midwest/news-release/a...

9/15/17

CHicago or Boston are the obvious choices. Great schools, great culture, public transportation, tons of educated workers and public transportation. NYC is just too expensive or else I'd say they would be the idea choice.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/15/17

Chicago is a terrible choice.

Chicago leads the nation in homicides:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/aug/13/vi...

Its public pensions are in the worst fiscal shape in the nation:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/sns-2017041...

It has the weakest job growth of the 12 largest metropolitan areas, and its job growth is well behind the national average:

https://www.bls.gov/regions/midwest/news-release/a...

Illinois is 49 out of 50 states in fiscal health.

https://www.mercatus.org/statefiscalrankings/illinois

Illinois has the highest overall tax burden in the nation.

https://www.illinoispolicy.org/illinois-has-highes...

Illinois' credit rating is nearly junk:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/politics/...

Chicago bonds are essentially junk.

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20170112/BL...

Chicago may be a great city in spite of its government, but neither the state of Illinois nor the city of Chicago is where I would invest $5 billion or the place I would bet the future of my company.

9/15/17

LOL.

God, you again.

Chicago homicides are where no one lives. I doubt Amazon is building in Cabrini Green.

As for the fiscal health, who cares. They can raise taxes. Major democratic cities have pension issues. Their fiscal issues didn't stop Boeing from moving. Didn't stop McDonalds from opening their HQ here. Didn't stop Google from having massive operations.

Ohare and Midway. Solid public transportation. Great schools in and around the city. Center of the country. Liberal social polices that bozo loves.

The women here are ugly though and tons of homeless. Definitely a horrible spot.

Lol

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/15/17

Except Amazon is expecting billions of dollars in corporate welfare, funds which neither Chicago nor Illinois actually has. The future of Illinois and Chicago is crumbling infrastructure and bankrupt governments. This actually matters when you're investing for decades into the future. It will be hard to retain quality personnel long-term when infrastructure is crumbling and tax burdens are oppressive.

9/15/17

Sweet analysis. I'm sure chicago is going to become Detroit. All the F500 companies here should shut down now.

Chicago, Boston, NYC. Places a tech company want to be. All places with pension issues because of Democrat rule. They're only leaving the socialist republic of Seattle because they've maxed the place out.

I repeat. State finances mean jack. Chicago is a major city in this country and it isn't going away. Companies continue to relocate here and expand. Texas could make a cash and I'd buy it. I'd want to believe in ATL, but they aren't there yet.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/15/17

And yet Amazon put out a national RFP, implying very publicly that it expects substantial corporate welfare. Chicago and Illinois' horrible fiscal health and its inability to actually provide said corporate welfare is why Chicago shows up on almost no business analyst's short list for Amazon HQ2.

9/15/17

Sweet bro.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/politics/...

if amazon is only focused on cash, texas wins. If they want talent and all the rest, it's chicago, NYC or Boston. If they want something in between, it's Atlanta or Denver.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/15/17

Yeah, I read this article. Hundreds of similar articles in local newspapers around the country--"[generic city] putting in major bid for Amazon." That article says nothing about Chicago's ability to actually win the bid. The best thing Chicago has going for it is that Emanuel is a big shot in the Democratic party, which may have some nominal pull on Bezos. Beyond that, Chicago has no money to give.

9/12/17

Idk if anyone has mentioned this but, what about Philly?

9/15/17

Zero chance. Love the city, but the people running the place are 3rd rate morons.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/16/17

90%+ blue in every election

9/16/17

What is comical is they elect the B team when it comes to idiot liberals. Rahm pushes this liberal garbage, but at least the dude is a pro and brings business. NYC is confusing to me. Bloomberg was amazing and then they elect this loser, deBlasio. NYC doesn't really get impacted though so it keeps chugging along.

Philly on the other hand thinks they can roll out all this liberal shit Boston, NYC and Chicago pull, but fail to realize the city isn't on that level economically. Kennedy pushed for a soda tax and what happens? Half the projected revenue and people lose jobs.

They push for a law banning wage disclosure. They have a tax on business revenue and business profits. Outrageous building costs. Clown city residents who obstruct buildings over parking spaces or shadows. City sales tax that was supposed to be temporary. On and on. So you have little kids running the city, trying to pull the shit their big brother does and guess what? Company locate in Conshy, Radnow, Plymouth Meeting. Or the build in Baltimore, Jersey City, NYC. No one NEEDS to be in Philadelphia (unlike NYC, Boston or Chicago) and the city fails to make them WANT to be there.

This is why I find it comical people thinking Amazon would come to Philly. Philly was trying to get GE to come and failed miserably. They talk about potential building locations - Schuylkill Yards or the Naval Yards.

Schuylkill Yards is Philly trying to copy NYC. Zero chance this is feasible in Amazons timeline. The Naval Yards is a possibility, but you cannot build tall there because of the flight path leading to the airport. Also, Amazon wants public transportation and Philly has zero plan to extend the subway down there.

Center City has enough space to put up a tower or two and some low rise buildings, but CC isn't going to be a KOZ. You need to building past 30th Street.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/12/17

The world would be just fine without Amazon. In fact, not much would really change in our lives. We' just spend maybe 2 extra minutes buying that electric toothbrush from Oral-B's own website instead (where it's actually cheaper sometimes). Not a big deal.

The same cannot be said about Apple, or Boeing/Airbus, or even Facebook.

9/12/17

Ya know, there's a beautiful alternate dimension where Facebook was never invented. Wish I lived in that world.

9/13/17

I honestly hate Facebook, I cannot believe how many students use that during classes... it literally is not even remotely entertaining at all.

I hope Zuckerberg runs for President though, zucc 2020

9/13/17

It's not entertaining--it's addictive. Same thing with smoking--cigarettes aren't a quality product; they are just addictive.

9/14/17

I agree. I really think it is even worse for Snapchat, I think Youtube is not as bad since it can be used for a lot of educational purposes (if used properly).

Dances with Dachshunds:

Agreed. It's just a glorified ad revenue machine. The way Zuckerberg and his monkeys think they're changing the world and doing meaningful things is a total f*cking joke. At best, they've changed the world for the worst.

Also agree, Zucc 2020 though.

9/14/17
Dances with Dachshunds:

Ya know, there's a beautiful alternate dimension where Facebook was never invented. Wish I lived in that world.

Facebook has not made our lives better while one can make a very strong case that Amazon has.

9/14/17

Agreed. It's just a glorified ad revenue machine. The way Zuckerberg and his monkeys think they're changing the world and doing meaningful things is a total f*cking joke. At best, they've changed the world for the worst.

9/15/17

Yeah - Amazon has made life better in a lot of ways, saves me money and time, two of the most valuable thing in life. And they are less creepy with my personal info. Not that I don't think they are using it but at least I am financially better off for it.

With Facebook I am the cow in the factory farm that is getting milked at the cost of my own time.

That is why I don't have a facebook.

9/14/17

Utah Valley baby! 60k+ students, very entrepreneurial environment, business-friendly tax synergies, and quickly growing tech scene. I can't post links to articles about it because I'm a new user, but Google "Utah and business", tons of stuff will come up.

9/14/17

inb4 they put it in toronto lel

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

9/15/17

Top 3:
Boston
Chicago
Dallas

Others that will try to compete but are cut early:
Austin
Atlanta
Denver
Charlotte
NYC
Philly

9/15/17

Midtown Atlanta. GA Tech nearby, hip vibe, access to (albeit laughable) public transit.

9/15/17

I wonder why public transport is so important. Do they generally recruit people unable to drive?

9/15/17

When you're talking about commuting in as many as 50,000 employees to your campus it would probably require robust mass transit.

The D.C. area actually has a perfect location for Amazon. The expanded metro into Dulles (close to the international airport) opening in 2020 could easily handle 8 million sf of new buildings (because there's basically nothing there right now), and it's a "reverse commute" away from D.C., which means the mass of humanity commuting via metro could be handled in both the morning and evening, on metro or on the highways. But I'm super biased.

9/15/17

Purely speculating, but as a former Atlantan who lived in the suburbs, but worked in the city, it's more of a convenience factor. I have a car, but some days didn't want to sit in traffic, and to be fair considering my previous comment about MARTA, there were times I really did enjoy being able to ride the train and completely zone out and listen to music, read, meditate en route to work, as opposed to staring at taillights and a license plate and stressing for 1-1.5 hrs. But yeah, public transport increases the geographical footprint from which you can recruit employees/that your employees can live, which can be huge in a city like Atlanta, mainly from a cost of living standpoint (ie, price of X square foot apt in Midtown/Buckhead does not equate the same SF in, say, Dunwoody or Alpharetta). By being located conveniently near public trans,a company opens itself up to a larger segment of population from which it could hire.

So basically, law of averages applies. A company would want to position itself where it could recruit from the largest group of people, whether it be dudes sans cars, or guys who like having a backyard/bigger hoise at the cost of loving farther from the office. Being near a public trans hub links that company into that large group.

9/15/17

Apologies for the typos...

9/15/17

I like ATL a lot and the airport would be a huge selling point, but they really need to invest in the MARTA. I think that bridge fire gave a lot of people religion. I was there a couple months ago and god, it's just so hard to move around.

I do think ATL has a good chance though. Amazon likes to stroke themselves, but I can't see Ivy League grads fighting to work for a gloried online retailer. GSU, Emory, UGA, all great schools that Amazon could hire from.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

9/16/17

I'm sure they get their fair share of ivy leaguers. Strong brand.

9/16/17
Big4please:

I'm sure they get their fair share of ivy leaguers. Strong brand.

Amazon had 400 MBA interns this past summer, and most were from top programs, including 40 from HBS, 30 from Wharton, 40 from Booth. So Amazon is doing pretty well in terms of recruiting top MBA talent. Where it struggles is in getting the best engineering talent from Harvard/Stanford/MIT, as they will flock to Google, Facebook, and other firms that offer higher cash salaries (Amazon's base salary cap is $160K) and a more generous RSU vesting schedule (Amazon's vesting is 5% first year, 15% 2nd year, and then 20% every 6 months in years 3 and 4).

9/16/17
San Ford:

Purely speculating, but as a former Atlantan who lived in the suburbs, but worked in the city, it's more of a convenience factor. I have a car, but some days didn't want to sit in traffic, and to be fair considering my previous comment about MARTA, there were times I really did enjoy being able to ride the train and completely zone out and listen to music, read, meditate en route to work, as opposed to staring at taillights and a license plate and stressing for 1-1.5 hrs. But yeah, public transport increases the geographical footprint from which you can recruit employees/that your employees can live, which can be huge in a city like Atlanta, mainly from a cost of living standpoint (ie, price of X square foot apt in Midtown/Buckhead does not equate the same SF in, say, Dunwoody or Alpharetta). By being located conveniently near public trans,a company opens itself up to a larger segment of population from which it could hire.

So basically, law of averages applies. A company would want to position itself where it could recruit from the largest group of people, whether it be dudes sans cars, or guys who like having a backyard/bigger hoise at the cost of loving farther from the office. Being near a public trans hub links that company into that large group.

This is right. The lack of a robust public transportation system is a deal breaker. In the Seattle offices, only 45% of Amazon employees drive to work, and most of them are married people who live in the suburbs. Young talent do not want to drive, as they enjoy the conveniences of being in a city where a car is not necessary. Ultimately, Bezos has to determine which factor is more important: cheap labor and low cost of living or getting the best talent? The latter will win out.

9/16/17
MBAGrad2015:

Ultimately, Bezos has to determine which factor is more important: cheap labor and low cost of living or getting the best talent? The latter will win out.

Totally agree. When you're talking about a company that may be worth $1 trillion in the next decade--assuming they obtain and retain technological and logistical advantages--over-focusing on labor costs, and especially real estate costs, is being pennywise and pound foolish. The tech business is ALL. ABOUT. TALENT.

Take this as an example. Let's say Amazon pays $200 PSF more for real estate in city A compared to city B across all 8 million square feet of new space. Well, that totals $1.6 billion, barely a rounding error in Amazon's value. When amortized over 39 years (as commercial real estate is), you're talking about a marginal difference in real estate capital costs of $41 million per year, literally a rounding error. To let real estate costs be even a top 10 consideration in headquarters location for Amazon would be ridiculous to the highest degree.

9/16/17
Dances with Dachshunds:
MBAGrad2015:

Ultimately, Bezos has to determine which factor is more important: cheap labor and low cost of living or getting the best talent? The latter will win out.

Totally agree. When you're talking about a company that may be worth $1 trillion in the next decade--assuming they obtain and retain technological and logistical advantages--over-focusing on labor costs, and especially real estate costs, is being pennywise and pound foolish. The tech business is ALL. ABOUT. TALENT.

Take this as an example. Let's say Amazon pays $200 PSF more for real estate in city A compared to city B across all 8 million square feet of new space. Well, that totals $1.6 billion, barely a rounding error in Amazon's value. When amortized over 39 years (as commercial real estate is), you're talking about a marginal difference in real estate capital costs of $41 million per year, literally a rounding error. To let real estate costs be even a top 10 consideration in headquarters location for Amazon would be ridiculous to the highest degree.

Correct. I think Bezos has 4-5 cities that he is seriously looking at but is using this as a brilliant PR stunt to see what type of offers he can get.

Cities such as Denver, Dallas, Austin, Atlanta, have a lot going for them, so this is not a knock on those cities. I just don't think they are a good fit given where Amazon is currently and its most important needs. If this were 10-15 years ago when Amazon was far smaller, those cities would make sense. Amazon is now such a dominant player in number of industries and looking to expand into others, that its more pressing challenge is recruiting and maintaining top talent rather than saving money on cheaper office space or even tax credits. Also keep in mind that much of the tech talent is either internationals or Americans of Asian descent. By and large, those groups want to live in cosmopolitan cities.

9/21/17

wtf is a "cosmopolitan" city? Don't you just mean some city on the east/ west coasts that takes itself way too seriously? What makes Seattle more "cosmopolitan" than Dallas or Atlanta?

9/21/17

Cosmopolitan: familiar with and at ease in many different countries and cultures.

Large coastal cities tend to be more cosmopolitan.

9/21/17