- Amazon will not move forward with plans for an HQ2 campus in New York's Long Island City, according to a statement on the company's blog.
- The company does not intend to reopen the HQ2 search, instead proceeding with planned expansions in Northern Virginia and Nashville. Amazon also noted that it has more than 5,000 employees in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island, and will continue to grow its New York teams.
- The news shows Amazon bowing to previously reported political pressure. "While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City," the company said in the statement.
The proposed location of Amazon's New York City HQ2 would have put the company a subway ride away from Madison Avenue, a hub of the marketing industry and a strategic location that could have proved beneficial as the company continues to expand its role as a digital advertising platform and marketing services provider. How the decision to forgo its planned Long Island City campus might affect its advertising business remains to be seen. But it's clear that any perceived benefits of a NYC headquarters were outweighed by increasing political pressure around the deal that was cut to bring Amazon to the city.
Marketing, advertising and tech employees in NYC that were planning to send their resumes to Amazon might still have an opportunity as the company says it plans to grow its 5,000-plus workforce throughout New York. Still unclear is to what degree Amazon's planned complexes in Northern Virginia and Nashville will evolve now that the NYC deal is off the table. The announcement will not impact the Virginia agreement, Stephen Moret, president of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, WAMU reported.
"The alternative sites which were part of the earlier announcement, Northern Virginia and Nashville, could well benefit with even more jobs than planned," Bankrate.com's senior economic analyst Mark Hamrick told Marketing Dive in emailed comments.
The Virginia deal does allow the company to grow from 25,000 employees to 37,850 employees by 2039, according to WAMU, but while the Northern Virginia campus is just outside of a media hub in Washington, D.C., the area does not have the advertising infrastructure of New York.
Despite the blow to its plans, Amazon's push into advertising continues. Just as the HQ2 news broke, the company revealed plans for a new self-service loyalty offering called Amazon Moments, which doles out both physical and digital rewards for marketers that are fulfilled, shipped and delivered by the online retailing giant.