If Amazon Picks Boston, Rhode Island Could Gain Too

Jan 18, 2018

Amazon package
Credit Silus Grok / Creative Commons via flickr

Rhode Island didn’t make the short list for Amazon’s much anticipated new headquarters, but Boston did. Boston is among 20 cities that the tech giant says could fit the bill for a new headquarters.

Rhode Island created a snazzy video and offered several possible sites to woo Amazon, but to no avail. Ocean State officials still hope to get in on possible action. Boston’s proximity could be a boon, if the tech giant chooses the Massachusetts capital.

Amazon’s new facility is expected to create 50,000 new jobs, and may spur growth in surrounding areas. Rhode Island officials are already hoping to get some of the economic fringe benefits of such a big project. 

Rhode Island Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor says Rhode Island has been in contact with the Seattle tech giant.

“The Amazon organization has a great deal of business to do within the United States and within the Northeast in particular,” said Pryor. “We are in dialogue with them about a variety of possibilities.”

Prior added at least one company here already does contract work with Amazon, employing a few hundred people in the state.

“In addition, there are other such projects that are possible, so one of the very positive outcomes of this process with Amazon is that we are higher profile within the company, and it elevates our ability to do future deals with them,” Pryor said.

Rhode Island lost out to Boston on GE headquarters in 2016, but got a consolation prize in the form of a small digital team based in Providence. Amazon is expected to make a final decision on the location for a new headquarters later this year.