The Shoreditch office will open in 2017 and is expected to help Amazon attract younger technology and sales talent.
Amazon.com Inc. is opening a new office in London that will enable the e-retailer to significantly expand its staff in the United Kingdom.
Amazon this week announced plans to open the new 431,000-square-foot corporate office in the Shoreditch area of east London. The new office, located within the 600,000-square-foot Principal Place building, will give Amazon total capacity for over 5,000 employees in London. The company currently employees 1,700 people in its U.K. offices, split between its U.K. headquarters in Slough, about 90 minutes outside London, a 12-story office building in Farringdon, central London, which opened last year, and the Amazon Development Centre in Glasshouse Yard that opened in 2012.
Amazon, No. 1 in the Internet Retailer 2014 Top 500 Guide and Europe 500 Guide, also plans to relocate all corporate employees from the Slough office to one of the three London offices by the summer of 2015. Construction on the new Shoreditch facility will begin later this month and is scheduled to be completed in late 2016. The Principal Place office will open in 2017.
“We have already invested well over 1 billion pounds ($1.63 billion) and created more than 7,000 permanent jobs across the U.K.,” says Christopher North, managing director of Amazon.co.uk Ltd. “To support our continued growth in the U.K’, we have secured this exceptional building giving us the capacity to hire thousands of new employees in London in the coming years, in addition to the thousands of permanent roles we will create across our U.K. fulfilment and customer service centers.”
The announcement continues Amazon’s ongoing transition from strictly a retail company to more of a technology company, says Scot Wingo, CEO of e-commerce technology and services firm ChannelAdvisor Corp. and long-time Amazon follower.
“This is not unexpected,” he says. “This new facility will allow Amazon to better recruit top technology, engineering and sales talent which tends to be younger, urban dwellers.” Wingo believes a new London-based corporate office was needed to shift its headquarters from the more rural Slough, which was originally selected to keep costs low and to function as more of a U.K. retail hub. The new London office will also keep up with the standard the company set following the announcement of a massive expansion to its Seattle campus, adding three new office towers and a three-sphere biodome.
By Jon Love Associate Editor, Research
September 17, 2014, 2:35 PM