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Amazon Expands Tech Hub in Portland, Oregon

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Amazon Expands Tech Hub in Portland, Oregon

Amazon is expanding its tech presence in Oregon, where it has already created over 3,500 jobs. On Wednesday, it announced it will open an 84,000 square-foot office in downtown Portland and will double its tech workforce in the area.

Amazon operates other tech hubs in North America (18 in total) and around the world, and it employs over 20,000 employees across the company’s North American Tech Hubs. Amazon has 650,000 employees worldwide.

Today’s announcement serves as a reminder that Amazon is more than an ecommerce marketplace.

Press release follows:

Amazon today announced an expansion of its Portland Tech Hub and plans to create 400 new high tech jobs in fields including software development, operations, IT, Support Engineering, Solutions Architects, and Product Management. With a new 84,000 square foot office in downtown Portland Amazon expects to double its tech workforce in the area. The company has created more than 3,500 full-time jobs in Oregon since 2010 and invested over $9 billion in the state, including customer fulfillment facilities, cloud infrastructure, and compensation to its employees.

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“We are excited to create more tech jobs in a city with a historic culture of innovation and tremendous talent,” said Khawaja Shams, VP of Engineering, AWS Elemental in Amazon’s new Portland office. “We look forward to hiring locally and generating more opportunity in our vibrant community. Thank you to all of our partners across the city and state for helping us to continue to invest here and contribute to keep growing and diversifying the local economy.”

“Our state is a great place to live, work, and play, and I’m pleased to see more Oregon jobs in the pipeline via the Amazon Portland Tech Hub,” said Governor Kate Brown. “By adding 400 more jobs, we grow both our vibrant tech industry and our community.”

“The City of Portland continues to be a leader in the technology sector, and the expansion of Amazon’s Portland Tech Hub is another example of that,” Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said. “It’s a win any time we can add jobs to our already-thriving economy.”

“Amazon’s expansion in Portland will have a tremendous impact on opportunities for our local workforce,” said Kimberly Branam, Prosper Portland executive director. “We look forward to the company’s growth here as a strong community partner helping us build an equitable economy.”

Amazon’s Portland Tech Hub is one of the company’s 18 North American Tech Hubs – a network of development centers in addition to Amazon’s Seattle and Northern Virginia headquarters. Together, these Hubs have more than 20,000 employees innovating for Amazon customers around the world. Portland-based Amazon teams currently build and support products and services for Amazon Web Services (AWS) including AWS Elemental which was founded in Portland in 2006.

With more than 650,000 employees worldwide, Amazon has been recognized on LinkedIn’s Top Companies list for the past four years, ranked #2 in the Fortune 2017 and 2018 World’s Most Admired Companies, and ranked #5 in Fast Company’sWorld’s Most Innovative Companies. The company also receives a perfect score from the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index. Amazon offers a wide range of programs to equip employees with the skills for new, in-demand jobs – from paid cloud computing apprenticeships, to Amazon Technical Academy to its innovative Career Choice initiative, which prepays 95 percent of the cost of tuition to pursue continuing education courses in in-demand fields, regardless of whether the skills are relevant to a career at Amazon. All these program are part of Upskilling 2025, a $700 million commitment by Amazon looking to support all employees in gaining critical skills to move into higher skill, better paying, technical or non-technical roles.

Investing and creating jobs in Oregon

Since 2010, Amazon has invested over $9 billion in Oregon, building customer fulfillment facilities, cloud infrastructure and research facilities. The company estimates that these direct investments in the state contributed more than $2 billion to Oregon’s economy (2010-2018) and generated an additional 13,000 indirect jobs on top of the company’s direct hires. There are also more than 34,500 authors, developers, and small and medium-sized businesses in Oregon’s growing their businesses with Amazon.

As a part of Amazon’s ongoing commitment to the communities where employees live and work, the Amazon Future Engineer program—a childhood-to-career program to inspire, educate, and propel children and young adults from underserved and underrepresented communities to try computer science – serves more than 10 million students each year across the country. In Oregon specifically, Amazon Future Engineer is funding computer science classes in more than a dozen Oregon high schools, funding more than 30 young local students in after school coding camps, and provided one school in Oregon with an Amazon Future Engineer Robotics grant. Amazon Future Engineer also awarded one student in Oregon an Amazon Future Engineer Scholarship. Additionally, hundreds of Portland-based Amazonians volunteer with local nonprofits working on hunger, housing, education, and the environment. In 2018, employees in Portland gave back over 3,000 hours engaging with 32 nonprofits, at over 100 events. In 2019 alone, Amazon employees have volunteered more than 1,800 hours with 27 nonprofits.

SOURCE: Amazon Press Release

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.

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