Business Propositions: Bid Winner for Next Amazon Headquarters?
We’re convinced Jeff Bezos is on a mission to take over the world.
His estimated $124 billion fortune makes him the wealthiest man alive by a longshot — Bill Gates trails Bezos by a “modest” $34 billion. Bezos, of course, is the CEO of “the everything store” Amazon, which could become the first-ever trillion-dollar corporation.
His side projects include space travel, the Washington Post newspaper, and a time-ticking device designed to run 10,000 years (yes, really)!
Now Bezos has cities throughout the country wooing him with massive tax breaks to bring Amazon’s HQ2— and its 50,000-plus jobs — to their city. After receiving bids from 238 cities, Bezos and company have whittled the list of contenders down to 20.
Here are the best bets to land the new offices, with odds coming from Bovada. These lines will ebb and flow drastically with each new rumor so jump on these odds right away!
Northern Virginia (+300) / Washington DC (+500)
Bovada has both areas listed as separate wagers, but we think it’s essentially a package deal. According to the latest leak, Amazon officials recently toured sites in and around the nation’s capital (including Maryland and Northern Virginia).
This news comes on top of a report that Amazon employees viewed an article — to the tune of 6,000 clicks — about environmentally-friendly buildings in Arlington County (located in Virginia). Bezos already has deep ties to the area with the Washington Post and a lavish $23 mansion in Washington DC that he bought cash in 2016.
This is just our theory, but Bezos positioning himself next to the oval office would be the ultimate power move. President Donald Trump has accused Amazon of being a monopoly more times than once, which doesn’t help Bezos cause. This move inches Bezos closer to federal influence — the one thing missing from Bezos’ world takeover mission.
Speculation for Austin has been rampant since the Super Bowl. During the big game, Amazon stole the show with a clever 90-second spot for its popular personal assistant “Alexa.” Austin is referenced twice in the ad, which may or may not be a coincidence.
Beyond the easter egg, Austin has earned a reputation for being Silicon Valley of the south. The average tech worker in Austin earned $118,000 last year — a seven-percent hike from the previous year — without the eye-gauging cost of living found in San Francisco.
Plus, the company already has familiarity with Austin — about 900 Amazon workers occupy a 240,000-square-foot office. However, we believe that existing presence works against the city. Bezos’ crusade for world domination needs seeds planted in various places, not one place.
Akin to sports, business comes down to talent. Well, there’s not a city better equipped at supplying Amazon with uber-talented graduates in business, engineering, math, and science than Boston. Of course, the city is home to two of the most prestigious colleges in the world — Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Both schools could very easily become breeding grounds for Amazon.
Amazon’s biggest competition in luring these bright minds are fellow tech giants Apple, Microsoft, and Facebook. Surely, having a headquarters in Boston’s backyard would give them “home-field advantage” in recruiting, especially considering the aforementioned three have home bases all the way on the West coast.
Throw in a metro area of over one million and blossoming real estate market — two criteria Amazon has mentioned will influence its decision — and Boston makes sense for Amazon in a lot of ways. Boston has the best chance at overtaking Washington DC in this race and is a pure value bet at +400.
Atlanta is the fifth and final spot with odds pegged in triple digits. The remaining 15 finalists have lines ranging between +2200 and +4000 — enough for us to write them off. But honestly, Atlanta is almost as big of a stretch to receive HQ2.
The city is threatening to kill its tax break with Delta after the airline severed ties with the National Rifle Association. The spat likely wouldn’t sit well with the liberal-leaning Amazon. That last thing Amazon wants is a city that picks politics over business.
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