ST. LOUIS – Gov. Jay Nixon today joined local governmental and company leaders to break ground on St. Louis-based World Wide Technology’s new global headquarters in Westport Plaza, a 42-acre commercial development center located in Maryland Heights. The expansion is the centerpiece of a $95 million joint redevelopment project by World Wide Technology and Lodging Hospitality Management. As part of this important expansion, World Wide Technology is expected to create an additional 500 jobs over the next several years.
“This is a great day for St. Louis as World Wide Technology embarks on another significant expansion and continues to create hundreds of jobs and further strengthen the region’s position as a hub for technology and innovation,” Gov. Nixon said. “These are good, high-paying jobs so I’m proud we could help make this project a reality and build on the progress we’ve made to bring Missouri’s unemployment rate to its lowest point in nearly a decade.”
The new, 210,000-sq. ft. World Wide Technology global headquarters is expected to open in mid-2017 and has a capacity to house 1,000 employees. In addition, World Wide Technology will continue to use its existing campus in Maryland Heights as a technology and innovation park housing its Advanced Technology Center, IT and other operations.
This is the second expansion in the metropolitan area for World Wide Technology this year with the company announcing its acquisition of mobile app and software company Asynchrony Labs in June. During 2015 World Wide integrated 250 personnel to operate the newly acquired Asynchrony Labs as well as announced plans to create another 250 additional jobs with an average wage of $70,000 over the next several years.
Last week, the November jobs report released by the Missouri Department of Economic Development showed that Missouri’s unemployment rate has dropped to 4.7 percent, lower than the national average and at its lowest level since 2006.
In addition, Missouri leads the nation in new business creation according to data by the U.S. Census Bureau and analyzed by the Kauffman Foundation. There were 1,293 more businesses created in Missouri in 2013 (the most recent year for which data is available) than in 2012, an increase of more than 16 percent. Over the same time period, 39 states saw a decrease in new business creation. Of the states that did see an increase in the number of new businesses, Missouri outperformed them dramatically – experiencing a bigger growth in new business creation than all ten of those states combined.
To assist with World Wide Technology expansion, Missouri has offered a strategic economic incentive package that the company can receive if it meets strict job creation criteria. The City of St. Louis as well as the St. Louis Development Corporation also assisted the company with its expansion.