SHREVEPORT, La., May 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards and Amazon announced the company's first robotics fulfillment center in Louisiana, with over 1,000 jobs and a $200 million capital investment coming to an LED Certified Site in north Shreveport. Located in the Hunter Industrial Park, the site is near Interstates 20, 49 and 220 and provides ideal access for Amazon's logistics operations.
The Amazon robotics fulfillment center will include contemporary robotics technology, inventory and shipping operations in a multi-level building with a 650,000-square-foot foundation. The project will create over 1,000 full-time jobs with starting pay of $15 per hour and comprehensive benefits beginning on day one — full medical, vision and dental insurance; and 401(k) savings with a 50 percent company match. The development will generate 800 construction jobs, and Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will result in an additional 1,118 new indirect jobs, for a total of more than 2,100 permanent new jobs in Northwest Louisiana.
"This new Amazon project is a major advancement for the Shreveport-Bossier City metro area and for Louisiana's economy," Gov. Edwards said. "In addition to providing strong benefits, Amazon will pay workers double the minimum wage or more in a state-of-the-art technology environment. Only a year ago, we dedicated Hunter Industrial Park as one site in a growing inventory of LED Certified Sites that now numbers 126 statewide. Through partnerships with our elected officials, economic development allies and utility partners, we are proving that great things are possible in Louisiana when we make smart plans for the future."
One of every five U.S. residents lives within a 500-mile radius of Shreveport, making the location enviable for distribution and logistics companies. Amazon will begin construction of its Shreveport fulfillment center immediately, with plans to open the site in September 2022 in time for its busiest e-commerce season.
"Amazon may be a global business, but it's made up of small businesses and communities. From the local jobs we bring, to the local people we employ, train, and upskill—our business is made up of people from communities like Shreveport," said William Hicks, Regional Director of Operations at Amazon. "We're thrilled to be able to expand our operations in Northwest Louisiana and we look forward to becoming part of the fabric of the local community."
The Amazon Robotics fulfillment center in Shreveport is the largest of seven Amazon facilities operating, announced or under construction in Louisiana. The company's committed investment in the state to-date is more than $600 million and includes seven Whole Foods Market locations. In Shreveport, Amazon employees will pick, pack and ship smaller customer orders, such as books, toys, electronics and other household items.
"The City of Shreveport is committed to developing a diverse business community," Mayor Adrian Perkins said. "We are excited to be the new home for a state-of-the-art distribution center. This will be a valuable asset to our community and will provide employment opportunities to hundreds of our residents. This project could change the life trajectory for many of our citizens who are still dealing with the financial fallout from the ongoing pandemic."
"Great things are happening in Caddo Parish, and we are delighted to welcome Amazon into our parish and region," said Caddo Parish Commission President Lyndon B. Johnson. "The arrival of such a large and multidimensional distribution center to Caddo Parish will undoubtedly have a significant impact on our area's economy. The ability to utilize over 1,000 members of our community's diverse and talented workforce will enhance the quality of life for our residents, and is a result of the strong collaboration between our governing bodies and community partners to create a winning opportunity for Amazon and the parish."
LED and its economic development partners began formal discussions with Amazon about a potential Shreveport fulfillment center in August 2020. To secure the project, the State of Louisiana offered the company a competitive incentive package that includes the comprehensive workforce solutions of LED FastStart®, the nation's No. 1 workforce training and talent attraction program. To offset site infrastructure costs, Amazon will be eligible for a $5 million performance-based grant payable in two installments during 2022 and 2023. In addition, the Caddo Parish Industrial Development Board is negotiating a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes, or PILOT, agreement with the company.
"The Caddo Parish Industrial Development Board (IDB) is excited about this project and proud of the part we've played," said Caddo IDB President Kyle McInnis. "Alongside North Louisiana Economic Partnership, LED, Caddo Parish, and the City of Shreveport, we have worked diligently to ensure that the tax incentives involved are attractive to the company while also providing substantial economic benefits to Caddo Parish and its citizens. Our board is made up of a diverse set of volunteer community leaders, all pleased to see our work lead to this great success. The project confirms that Caddo Parish is an attractive place for large-scale industrial development, and we look forward to more projects like this."
In 2020, Amazon ranked Louisiana No. 5 among all states for the fastest annual growth among its digital entrepreneur partners. More than 14,500 small and medium-sized businesses in the state participate in Amazon's fulfillment network and collectively recorded a 49 percent growth in recent year-over-year sales.
"We are thrilled to have Amazon become a new major employer in North Louisiana," said Chairman Chap Breard of the North Louisiana Economic Partnership. "Their decision to locate in Shreveport confirms that North Louisiana's competitive strategic location, strong stakeholder partnerships and project-ready industrial sites, like the Hunter Industrial Park that was certified in 2020, are critical for success in economic development." In addition to the entities noted above, NLEP gives special recognition to community stakeholders including Walker-Alley & Associates, the Shreveport-Caddo Metropolitan Planning Commission, Caddo Levee District, Engineering and Public Works Departments of the City of Shreveport, State Fire Marshall, Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, and AEP SWEPCO for their responsiveness and collaboration in bringing this major project to fruition.
The hiring of most employees for Amazon's Shreveport fulfillment center will begin in the summer of 2022, approximately three months prior to the launch of the facility. To keep up-to-date with career opportunities at Amazon in Shreveport, visit Opportunities.LEDFastStart.com/global/en/Amazon.
About North Louisiana Economic Partnership
North Louisiana Economic Partnership, an Accredited Economic Development Organization, provides professional economic development services to a 14-parish region of North Louisiana, including lead generation and prospect management. The organization also represents the interests of North Louisiana with a unified voice and as a single point of contact. It acts as a catalyst, a convener, and a connector in the region to ensure that North Louisiana's economic development potential is realized. Its vision is for North Louisiana to be a thriving region-a destination for high quality talent, innovative companies, and global investment.
Media Contact: Angie White, Executive Vice President
(E-mail) [email protected]
SOURCE North Louisiana Economic Partnership