Lowe’s Companies Inc. has selected Charlotte, NC as the future home of its new $153 million global technology center, creating more than 1,900 net new jobs in the city. Set to open in late 2021, the 357,000-square-foot technology center will be located in a new 23-story tower, branded with Lowe’s, in the bustling neighborhood immediately south of uptown Charlotte.
The dedicated technology hub will help accelerate the Fortune 50 company’s technology transformation, serving as the epicenter for the team Lowe’s is hiring to help modernize its IT systems and build future retail experiences. The center will ultimately employ up to 2,000 associates.
“We’re excited to stand up our new global technology center here in North Carolina to continue to drive our company’s growth,” said Marvin R. Ellison, Lowe’s president and CEO, who joined the company in July 2018. “Locating our new facility in the heart of Charlotte, the state’s largest metropolitan area, will enable Lowe’s to attract top technology talent and foster collaboration with our teams in our nearby Mooresville headquarters. This team will create technology solutions that will accelerate our commitment to becoming a best-in-class, omni-channel retailer and strengthen our associate and customer experiences.”
Lowe’s project will be facilitated, in part, by a Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) and a grant from the One North Carolina Fund.
The JDIG was approved by the state’s Economic Investment Committee. Over the course of the grant’s 12-year term, the project will grow the state’s economy by an estimated $6.3 billion. Using a formula that takes into account the new tax revenues generated by the 1,612 new jobs, the JDIG agreement authorizes the potential reimbursement to the company of up to $54,090,750, paid over 12 years. State payments only occur following performance verification by the departments of Commerce and Revenue that the company has met its incremental job creation and investment targets.
Because Lowe’s chose to expand in Mecklenburg County, classified by the state’s economic tier system as Tier 3, the company’s JDIG agreement also calls for moving as much as $18 million into the state’s Industrial Development Fund – Utility Account. The Utility Account helps rural communities finance necessary infrastructure upgrades to attract future business. Even when new jobs are created in a Tier 3 county such as Mecklenburg, the new tax revenue generated through JDIG grants helps more economically challenged communities elsewhere in the state.
A performance-based grant of $2 million from the One North Carolina Fund will also support the project. The One NC Fund provides financial assistance to local governments to help attract economic investment and to create jobs. Companies receiving OneNC grants must meet job creation and capital investment targets to qualify for payment. All One NC grants require a matching grant from local governments and the state award is contingent upon that condition being met.
“For nearly 75 years, Lowe’s roots in North Carolina have run deep, growing from one small hardware store into a Fortune 50 home improvement retailer,” said North Carolina Commerce Secretary Anthony M. Copeland. “Their story exemplifies North Carolina’s strengths as a business location and demonstrates how our state provides everything a company might need, no matter the stage of growth or level of skill sought.”
“Lowe’s is expanding in a way that will take technology to new heights and this company knows its home state can provide the highly trained workforce it needs,” said Gov. Roy Cooper. “We are committed to ensuring workers have the right skills to encourage companies to grow their footprint in our state with confidence.”
“Lowe’s decision to establish its global technology center in the Charlotte region and grow its regional footprint further proves that we’re a burgeoning tech talent and innovation hub,” said Charlotte Regional Business Alliance CEO Janet LaBar. “Lowe’s is an admired Fortune 50 company, whose leadership is deeply engaged in our community. We appreciate that Lowe’s continues to invest in the Charlotte region and together with the state, county, city, education and workforce partners look forward to supporting their growth here.”
The project was a collaborative effort between the City of Charlotte, the North Carolina Department of Commerce, the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina Community College System, the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance, Duke Energy, Davidson College, Duke University, East Carolina University, Johnson C. Smith University, North Carolina A&T State University, North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Central Piedmont Community College, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Carolina Fintech Hub, Road to Hire, Tech Talent South, and Charlotte Works.
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