Amazon.com will launch a state-of-the-art import processing center in Smithfield, North Carolina (Johnston County), creating more than 500 jobs which offer a starting wage of $15-an-hour and comprehensive benefits beginning on the first day of employment. The 620,000-sq-ft cross-dock warehousing facility expected to launch operations in 2022, will receive products into the company’s fulfillment network and ready them for shipment to consumers. County and municipal leaders joined company officials in making the announcement at a joint meeting held earlier today at the Smithfield Recreation and Aquatic Center.
“Amazon’s selection of Johnston County for this important new facility will bring accessible job opportunities, local tax-base and economic diversification to Smithfield and beyond, and it marks a major win for our community,” said Chad Stewart, chairman of the Johnston County Board of Commissioners. “We welcome the arrival of this game- changing company and are deeply grateful for the positive impact it will make here.”
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper also welcomed the company’s decision in a prepared statement. “Amazon has found a home in North Carolina and we are excited about this latest announcement for Smithfield,” Governor Cooper said. “Our world-class workforce is ready to step up and make the new, state-of-the-art facility a strong link in the company’s supply chain.”
“This is a historic day for the Town of Smithfield,” said Mayor Andy Moore. “By welcoming Amazon here, we have embarked on a new era of growth, with an immediate impact on job creation, and a ripple effect on every aspect of our local economy. We are excited to welcome Amazon to Smithfield and know they will be a wonderful addition to our community.”
“Since August of 2016, the Town of Smithfield has been able to make steady progress on implementing the identified action items from the Town’s Economic Development Strategic Plan,” said Tim Kerigan, HR/PIO/Economic Development Director for the Town of Smithfield. “We are thrilled to realize some of the fruits of that labor and financial commitment.”
Since 2010, Amazon has created over 27,000 full- and part-time jobs in North Carolina and invested more than $2.1 billion across the state, including infrastructure and compensation to its employees. Amazon’s investments have contributed more than $1.9 billion in GDP to the North Carolina economy and have helped create over 9,100 indirect jobs on top of Amazon’s direct hires – from jobs in construction and logistics to professional services. More than 48,000 independent authors and small and medium businesses in North Carolina are selling to customers in Amazon’s store, creating thousands of additional jobs across the state.
“North Carolina is great for business, and Amazon is excited to continue its growth and investment with a new cross-dock facility in Smithfield,” said Courtney Johnson Norman, a spokesman for the company. “North Carolina has an incredible workforce that has been vital to our ability to serve our customers across the region. The new jobs in Smithfield will provide competitive pay and comprehensive benefits on day one along with opportunities for professional growth and career development for those looking to build better and brighter futures.”
Jobs at the new fulfillment center will offer competitive pay and benefits, including health insurance, a 401(k) with a 50% match, paid parental leave and Amazon’s innovative Career Choice program, which pre-pays 95% of tuition for courses in high- demand fields. Since the launch of Career Choice, more than 30,000 Amazon employees have pursued degrees in game design and visual communications, nursing, IT programming, radiology and other studies. In addition, Amazon has pledged to invest over $700 million to provide upskilling training for 100,000 U.S. employees for in- demand jobs. These programs will help Amazonians from all backgrounds access training to move into highly skilled roles across the company’s corporate offices, tech hubs, fulfillment centers, retail stores, and transportation network, or pursue career paths outside of Amazon.
“The extensive economic impact of this new facility will benefit all our county’s residents,” explained Chris Johnson, director of the Johnston County Office of Economic Development. “Like all the most impactful projects, this one called for collaboration and hard work among a team of public and private leaders from inside the county and beyond.” Amazon’s arrival comes only three years after Johnson and other local leaders embarked on their vision for West Smithfield Industrial Park, which included shovel- ready certification by the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC). “I’m incredibly grateful for the dedication of all our partners and allies in making this exciting announcement possible.”
Amazon currently operates five fulfillment and sort centers in North Carolina, along with five delivery stations, one Air Gateway, 15 Whole Foods Market locations, one Amazon Hub Locker+ locations, two Prime Now Hubs and a wind farm.
Source: Town of Smithfield