No Amazon HQ2, But it’s not the end of the story for South Florida
Excerpt: South Florida will not be the site of Amazon’s coveted second headquarters, known as HQ2, according to people familiar with the matter, as reported by the Wall Street Journal Tuesday morning.
But there’s still hope that South Florida can compete for a different tech headquarters from Amazon — one that focuses on Latin America.
“Clearly, we are disappointed pending [Tuesday’s] official announcement from Amazon,” said Bob Swindell, president and CEO of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance. “But, the entire HQ2 process has benefited South Florida in important validation that South Florida is one of the nation’s top locations for a tech headquarters and in coalescing a strong regional collaboration on large projects that will benefit South Florida. Now we are focused on making a case for Amazon HQ-LatAm, based on initial reports neither of the new HQ2 locations could compete or compare to a SoFL location for a Latin American headquarters.”
Bottom Line: As much of a cheerleader as I was for HQ2 in South Florida, in my heart of hearts I didn’t anticipate we’d win it. There’s too much working against, mainly geography, for that specific type of project. If you’ve ever driven from South Florida out of state, you’re well aware of how significant of a logistics headache that could be for a company that’s built around logistics. That being said... What’s a weakness stateside is a strength internationally. Already known as the gateway to Latin America, there’s no better city in the country for Amazon’s next big conquest and with three international airports within 60 miles what’s a logistics disadvantage for HQ2 is an incredible strength for our region in phase three. And that may well have been what Bezos was thinking all along.
Amazon.com wasn’t built by Bezos playing one chess move at a time without having worked out several potential moves in advance.