New York, Rhode Island, Georgia, and at least eight other states were vying for the project, but in the end General Electric Co. has elected to relocate its global headquarters from Fairfield, CT to Boston, according to news reports. An official announcement is expected from GE on January 14.
The move was spurred when Connecticut legislators threatened to raise corporate taxes. Shortly after, GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt made it clear he was looking for a new headquarters in an email telling employees that the company was considering relocating to a state with “a more pro-business environment.”
The new headquarters will employ up to 600 people. A specific site has not yet been named, but according to The Boston Globe GE is focused on the Seaport area.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh worked together for months to attract the corporate giant to the city. Incentives will be made available once GE makes its final site selection: The city could offer up to $20 million in property tax relief over 20 years, while state incentives could reach $120 million and include help with real estate acquisition costs, infrastructure improvements, and tax incentives.
GE’s choice reflects Boston’s reputation as a hub of innovation in technology and life sciences. The presence of tech firms and major research universities such as Harvard, Boston University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology was a major consideration in the decision. Following the sale of GE Capital, the company has been shifting its focus to advanced technology-reliant sectors such power and clean energy, oil and gas, aviation, and health sciences.
This is a developing story and will be updated as needed.