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Business & Economy

Apple Plans $1 Billion Investment, 3,000 jobs in Research Triangle Park

Tim Cook Apple
Tim Cook on stage at Apple’s September 10, 2019 event.

Tech giant Apple announced Monday morning it would invest more than $1 billion and create 3,000 new jobs in North Carolina over the next decade.

Apple plans to build a new campus ― spanning about one million square feet ― in Research Triangle Park to house the new workforce

It will be the company's first campus on the east coast. The hub will be home to thousands of jobs in machine learning, artificial intelligence, software engineering and other fields, the company said.

Monday morning, North Carolina’s Economic Investment Committee approved a tax incentive package worth $846 billion in tax incentives under the Jobs Development Investment Grant - or JDIG - program, should Apple meet hiring and investment benchmarks. The JDIG agreement also calls for moving as much as $112 million into the state’s Industrial Development Fund – Utility Account.

“As a North Carolina native, I’m thrilled Apple is expanding and creating new long-term job opportunities in the community I grew up in,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer.

About 1,100 Apple employees currently pepper the state in retail stores and a data center in Catawba County. These new jobs would be concentrated in Research Triangle Park, which is southeast of Durham and northwest of Raleigh. Apple plans to begin hiring immediately, with plans to lease space while construction crews build the new facility.

Apple announcement governor roy cooper and legislature leadership at mansion
Jason deBruyn
Governor Roy Cooper at the lectern on the south lawn of the governor's mansion flanked by, from left, Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders, House Democratic Leader Robert Reives, House Speaker Tim Moore, Wake County Commission Chairman Matt Calabria, Senate Democratic Leader Dan Blue, and Senate President Phil Berger.

In press materials distributed by Apple, education and business leaders praised the move.

"This announcement is a sign that we're turning the page on the horrendous legacy of House Bill 2 and the five years of trauma it wrought on our state," Equality NC Executive Director Kendra R. Johnson said in a prepared statement. "We still have a lot of work to do to protect the most vulnerable LGBTQ North Carolinians, but we can rest assured that pro-equality companies expanding within our state signals a new chapter for our communities and the path ahead."

The Republican-led North Carolina legislature in 2016 passed the infamous House Bill 2, which came to be known as the bathroom bill, which required people to use public restrooms that aligned with their birth gender. The move led to, among other things, companies curtailing investment in the state.

As part of the investment, Apple will establish a $100 million fund to support schools, and contribute $110 million to infrastructure spending in 80 counties with the greatest needs. Funds will go to projects in broadband, roads and bridges, and public schools.

“We are excited to welcome Apple to our thriving technology ecosystem,” said Michael Haley, Executive Director of Wake County Economic Development. “This is an important milestone that strengthens our position as a tech hub. Apple’s decision to invest in the Triangle is a testament to our community’s talent, resources, and overall quality of life.”

WUNC's Mitchell Northam and Celeste Gracia, and the Associated Press, contributed to this report.

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