Mike Rosa, Senior Vice President, Economic Development
When Amazon announced in November 2018 its decision to split the HQ2 project evenly between the Washington, D.C. and New York metro areas, the Dallas Region missed the opportunity to add 25,000 new Amazon jobs over the next several years. It was disappointing to come up just short after the Dallas Regional Chamber and so many regional allies and partners worked together and played a great game.
During the year-long Amazon HQ2 search, other companies were watching closely, keenly interested in where Amazon would locate. I believed that our region would win either way; certainly, if HQ2 landed here, but if not, we’d see a surge of locations and expansions by other major companies. That’s exactly what happened.
It started on the very same day that Amazon announced its decision – Nov. 13, 2018. That day, in a very big shadow, Richardson had a major win when Infosys announced it would locate a 500-job technology and innovation hub. A couple weeks later, McKesson – at that time ranked higher than Amazon on the Fortune 10 list – announced its headquarters move to Irving. The PGA of America announced a move to Frisco from Florida in December 2018.
2019 got off to a great start and kept going. Salesforce, Uber, and Tripactions were all significant announcements for downtown Dallas. USAA and JPMorgan Chase were among Plano’s big wins. Raytheon grew in McKinney. Allstate and Microsoft announced major expansions in Irving. British high-performance automaker McLaren announced at a DRC breakfast in September its North American headquarters move from New York to Coppell.
The final big announcement of 2019 was on Nov. 25, when Charles Schwab announced it would acquire TD Ameritrade and Schwab’s headquarters would locate in Westlake.
These corporate moves and expansions alone represent about 15,000 new jobs for the Dallas Region, all announced in the 15 months since we lost the promise of 25,000 jobs at Amazon.
All told, the Dallas Region added about 121,000 total jobs from November 2018 to November 2019 (the most recent 12-month data available). That’s more gains in employment than any other metro area, and more jobs than were added in 47 states. Only Texas, California, and Florida added more jobs than we did.
There’s a reason the DRC wants to recruit companies, help existing businesses grow, foster innovation, and tell the world about our incredible workforce and our extremely business-friendly climate. We do it to build and keep this region strong and on a prosperous path, so that we live and work in a place that provides an opportunity for individuals, businesses, and organizations to thrive and have a good life.
When a new company moves, grows, or starts here, each is a spark; jobs are created. The Dallas Region has added 950,000 jobs over the past 10 years. In one decade, our region has grown by more than the total number of jobs right now in New Orleans, Jacksonville, Raleigh, or Oklahoma City. San Antonio and Austin each have about 1.1 million total jobs.
People move here. Office space, houses, apartments, restaurants, and infrastructure are built. The arts, entertainment, and sports benefit. Small businesses find customers.
The tax base grows. We have more resources available to care for those in need, solve problems, educate our kids, fix roads, build bike trails and airport terminals, and – overall – to invest in our future. New things happen.
It’s not like this everywhere. No other region has had long-haul success like ours in recruiting companies and creating jobs, and this train is rolling right into the new decade.