Apple might be considering North Carolina and Northern Virginia for the new Apple campus, which would be focused on technical support. The Cupertino, California-based company told officials in Northern Virginia that it wants space big enough to accommodate about 20,000 employees, according to The Washington Post.
Reportedly, Apple told economic development officials in Northern Virginia that it needs about four million square feet of space to accommodate 20,000 employees. Amazon is also eyeing similar locations for its new campus.
The officials have supposedly proposed several new sites in Crystal City, privately owned Loudoun County land near the Center for Innovation technology and the Scotts Run development in Tysons for the new Apple campus. Both Crystal City and the Loudoun land have been proposed to Amazon as well. Both the companies are expected to finalize a site sometime this year.
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Northern Virginia would benefit immensely if both the companies choose it for their centers. However, a separate report from Triangle Business Journal claims that the iPhone maker is considering Research Triangle Park in North Carolina for the new Apple campus. Spread across 22 million square feet, the research park has become an attractive site for tech companies and has emerged as North Carolina’s technology hub due to its proximity with NC State, the University of North Carolina and Duke University.
According to WRAL News, Apple’s estimated investment in the new campus at NC would be somewhere between $1.5 billion and $2 billion upon completion. As well, the average salary for Apple employees in the area which would house the research and development positions, would be approximately $130,000.
Also, there are reports that the transfer of the employees to the Research Triangle Park campus would be in stages. Initially, the company would lease the office space for approximately 1,000 employees in Cary, and at the same time would also start construction on the 300 acres of land.
Apple CEO Tim Cook is quite familiar with the area as he earned his MBA degree from Duke University in 1988. Reportedly Cook met with NC Governor Roy Cooper recently, and now officials are drafting an incentive package that would include thirty years of county property tax abatements and adjustments to employee withholding taxes.
Earlier this year, Apple already came out clear that it would spend $30 billion on new facilities and hire 20,000 employees in the U.S. over the next five years. Unlike Amazon, Apple has kept much of its plans for the new campus under wraps.
The D.C. region is an attractive destination for West Coast technology companies, which are seeking a young, highly educated and tech savvy workforce. Further, the region is near to universities and colleges, and more importantly is very near Congress and the Trump administration.
“It is akin to what the defense industry did in the 1990s and early 2000s when it moved headquarters and facilities to be closer in touch with the people who use its product,” said Tom Stringer, a corporate location specialist and managing director at BDO International, according to USAToday. “Big tech companies, as big and diversified as they have gotten and as many regulatory areas they now fall under, are starting to take the same approach.”
In separate news, in the ongoing patent lawsuit between Apple and Samsung, the former now says that the iPhone was the biggest risk that the company took. Apple’s Vice President of Marketing, Greg Joswiak, recently testified in the ongoing legal war with Samsung, saying the launch of the iPhone was the game changing moment for Apple.
“We were really risking everything that was making Apple successful at the time,” Joswiak said. “We were really betting the company.”
In the lawsuit, which first started in 2011, Apple accused Samsung of stealing features used in the iPhone and the iPad, while the Korean firm is alleging that Apple infringed upon patented features used in its tablets and phones. In 2012, Samsung was ordered to pay over a billion dollars, but the amount was later reduced to approximately $340 million.
Now, the company is appealing the damages in a new case that started on Monday, where Joswiak explained how the iPhone and overall product design has been embedded in the company’s DNA. “That’s something that [Apple co-founder] Steve Jobs had created in the DNA of the company,” he added.
On Wednesday, Apple shares closed up 0.93% at $188.18.