Amazon says it’s invested more than $34B into Virginia in the last decade

Amazon says it’s invested more than $34B into Virginia in the last decade

By  –  Staff Reporter, Washington Business Journal Inc. is boasting a whopping $34 billion investment in Virginia from 2010 to 2020 in its latest economic impact report.

According to the 2021 U.S. Economic Impact report produced for the company by Keystone Strategy and released Wednesday, Amazon's investment in Virginia makes up 6% of the company's total U.S. investment since 2010. It’s the third-largest among the states, only exceeded by Washington and California, the report says.

Out of Amazon’s total dollars dedicated to infrastructure and compensation in Virginia, Northern Virginia has collected the vast majority — almost 84% — a tally of $28.5 billion from 2010 to 2020, company spokeswoman Emily Hawkins said.

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) said it has filled a total of 27,000 full- and part-time jobs on corporate, technology, logistics and operations teams in Virginia since 2010.

And while the company's hiring appears frenzied, researchers say major tech employers are up against a brain drain in Greater Washington, with an oversaturation of graduates with tech degrees compared to the industry's open jobs. Researchers from the real estate firm CBRE reported in July that between 2015 and 2019, 55,931 people in Greater Washington earned tech degrees, but faced a job market with only 24,080 new openings. The gap was particularly deep for female and nonwhite candidates, and previews a potentially sustaining problem for Greater Washington moving forward, according to the CBRE report.

Amazon’s most recent tally of hiring for its Arlington second headquarters is 1,600 corporate employees, Hawkins said — an early step toward the company’s plans to hire at least 25,000 total by 2030.

That doesn’t include the 96,000 indirect jobs in the state — 75,500 of which were filled in Northern Virginia — the company says are supported by the company’s presence in Virginia. That calculation, based on U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis research, spans industries like retail, food services, construction,  transportation and health care, the company said.

The company values its investments related to its Northern Virginia headquarters in Arlington at $2.5 billion — but it hasn’t disclosed the specific costs of the construction projects for either of its two corporate sites in Pentagon City. Metropolitan Park is currently under construction, and Pen Place, the second phase of HQ2, is still under site plan review, pending Arlington County approval by the end of the year.

Amazon’s footprint in Virginia, beyond its Arlington second headquarters, includes:

  • 15 Whole Foods Market locations, including 10 in Northern Virginia
  • one open Amazon Fresh grocery store, with at least four more slated for Northern Virginia
  • eight fulfillment and sortation centers
  • eight delivery stations
  • three Prime Now fulfillment centers
  • one Amazon Fresh fulfillment center, in Springfield.

The company didn’t specify its investment in the District or Montgomery or Prince George’s counties in Maryland. But its investment in Maryland since 2010 totals $9.5 billion, and includes the creation of 29,000 full- and part-time jobs and 31,000 indirect jobs, Amazon states in the report.