Apple vs. Amazon: A tale of new headquarters

Tech giant Apple announced it would invest in a new campus on Thursday, which – unlike Amazon’s very public search—it had been planning in an under-the-radar process for months.

The campus will be built in Austin, Texas, down the road from existing company facilities. Apple will also invest in new sites across other cities around the country.

Contrasting Amazon, which cited finding and recruiting a talented workforce as a reason behind its new location decisions, Apple said talent was not confined to certain geographical locations.

“Talent, creativity and tomorrow’s breakthrough ideas aren’t limited by region or zip code, and, with this new expansion, we’re redoubling our commitment to cultivating the high-tech sector and workforce nationwide,” CEO Tim Cook said in a statement.

Here’s a look at the two companies’ new investments.


Apple will invest $1 billion to build its new campus in North Austin. The facility will be about a mile down the road from established facilities.

The company has not yet detailed what incentives it will receive from the city and state.

Amazon will invest $2.5 billion in its Long Island City, Queens, location. In exchange, it will receive incentives worth a cumulative $1.525 billion.

In its second location, Arlington, Virginia, the company will spend $2.5 billion, in exchange for $573 million in direct performance-based incentives and a cash grant worth $23 million.


Apple’s new campus will span 133 acres, with 50 acres of preserved open space, according to the company. It will also be powered by 100 percent renewable energy.

Amazon’s Long Island City office is expected to be 4 million square feet of “energy efficient office space,” with the opportunity to expand to 8 million square feet. In Arlington, the specifications for the new office will be equal.


In Austin, Apple will be hiring an initial 5,000 employees, saying it has capacity to grow that number to 15,000.

The tech company will be hiring across a broad range of positions, including research and design, operations, finance, sales and customer support.

Austin already has the largest population of workers outside of its headquarters in Cupertino, California, at 6,200.

Amazon is expected to hire a total of 50,000 workers, adding 25,000 jobs in both Arlington and Queens. The company said the average salary for these jobs is expected to be $150,000.

Billions of dollars’ worth of incentives depend on Amazon’s fulfillment of those jobs creation promises.

Additional investments

Over the next three years, Apple said it will establish new sites in a number of other cities, including Seattle; San Diego; Culver City, California; New York; Boulder, Colorado; and Pittsburgh.

The company said it added 6,000 jobs in 2018 and employs 90,000 people across the country. It expects that number to rise by 20,000 through 2023.

In addition to its two new headquarters, Amazon also announced its intent to build an Operations Center of Excellence in Nashville, where it will spend more than $230 million for a 1 million square-foot facility. It expects to create 5,000 jobs in the city.