Apple to build $1 billion campus in Austin, expand in other cities

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Apple will build a $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas, and establish smaller new locations in Seattle, San Diego and Culver City, California, the company said Thursday.

The tech giant based in Cupertino, California, says the new campus in Austin will start with 5,000 employees working in engineering, research and development, operations, finance, sales and customer support. It will be less than a mile from existing Apple facilities.

The other new locations will have more than 1,000 employees each.

Indiana's lead economic development agency declined to say whether it tried to land any of the Apple facilities.

“All negotiations conducted by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation are confidential. We cannot confirm or comment on any discussions,"   IEDC spokeswoman Erin Sweitzer said in an email to IBJ.

Austin already is home to more than 6,000 Apple employees, representing the largest population of the company's workers outside of Apple's Cupertino headquarters, where most of its roughly 37,000 California employees work.

"Apple has been a vital part of the Austin community for a quarter century, and we are thrilled that they are deepening their investment in our people and the city we love," said Austin Mayor Steve Adler in a statement.

The company also said it plans to expand in Pittsburgh, New York and Colorado over the next three years.

The Austin announcement comes nearly a year after Apple disclosed it would canvas the U.S. for another location.

Cities wooed Apple with various incentives, though Apple CEO Tim Cook said the company wasn't trying to stage a competition like Amazon, which encouraged civic leaders to come up with enticing packages if they wanted their cities to become the home of its second headquarters.

Amazon announced last month that after a 14-month search it had selected Long Island City, Queens, and Arlington, Virginia , as the joint winners. Each site will get 25,000 jobs. In addition, Amazon announced that it will open an operations center in Nashville, Tennessee, that will create 5,000 jobs.

Among U.S. President Donald Trump’s “America First” policies were promises to bring manufacturing jobs back to the U.S. from Asia, and businesses have been increasing efforts to hire locally to avoid conflict.

Apple has long used China as its production base for everything from the signature iPhone to iPads and Macs. In his early years running Apple, Cook responded to questions about increasing manufacturing in the U.S. by saying the skill sets in China are more conducive to producing the company’s products.

However, in recent months, Cook has modified that view, saying in an interview this year that “it’s not true that the iPhone is not made in the United States.” Some components, like the smartphone’s glass cover, are manufactured in the U.S. and shipped for assembly in China.

In December 2013, Cook said on Twitter that the then-flagship Mac Pro desktop computer would be manufactured in Austin, rather than China.

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