Amazon.com Inc. executives embarked on a publicity tour of sorts this week, visiting a handful of North American cities to announce how the company will double its corporate workforces in those locations, primarily by hiring technology development professionals to support the continued expansion of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and its retail websites. Taken together, Amazon announced plans to hire more than 5,000 technology employees in North America.
On Monday, Amazon executives, alongside Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, announced plans to hire 3,000 technology professionals to work in downtown Vancouver in a new 416,000-square-foot office tower that will be built on the site of city’s old post office. The hires will expand Amazon’s corporate workforce in Vancouver to 5,000. The announcement, which was streamed live on Twitter, emphasized hiring talent coming out of Canadian universities, as well as Canada’s appeal to global talent that want to live and work in Canada. Amazon opened its first Vancouver office in 2011 and currently has about 1,000 employees there. The company in November announced plans to hire 1,000 more.
“I think Canadians also believe that every day is Day 1,” Trudeau said in his remarks, referring to Amazon’s Day 1 business philosophy.
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Amazon also confirmed its plan to hire 200 technology workers in Minneapolis, expanding its employee count there from about 150, according to a report in the Star Tribune. Executives will visit later this week to meet with local officials about the plan.
The Twin Cities and Vancouver submitted plans to Amazon as possible locations for Amazon’s second headquarters but were not among the 20 finalists Amazon announced earlier this year.
The e-retailer also said this week it will hire 2,000 tech employees in Boston to expand its existing technology hub there. With the hiring spree, it will open a 430,000-square-foot office in the city’s Seaport waterfront development by 2021.
“In just a few years, we’ve grown from a handful of software developers and scientists to a team of more than 1,200, inventing new capabilities and products on behalf of millions of customers around the world,” said Rohit Prasad, Amazon’s Boston-area-based vice president and head scientist of Amazon Alexa.
Boston is on the list of 20 finalists still in contention for Amazon’s second headquarters, which is expected to create about 50,000 jobs and cost more than $5 billion. Amazon says it will announce the location of its second headquarters later this year.
Combined, Amazon’s technology hiring announcements from this week is about five times the number The Home Depot Inc. announced last month it planned to hire to address its technology needs. The Home Depot announced it would hire more than 1,000 technology professionals in hubs it has across the United States.
Amazon globally employs more than 560,000 people and is No. 1 in the Internet Retailer Top 1000. The Home Depot is No. 8.
Bloomberg contributed to this report.