Amazon offered billions in tax breaks for second US headquarters

Amazon said it will announce a decision for its second campus, in addition to its Seattle headquarters, next year. (Reuters)
Updated 19 October 2017
0

Amazon offered billions in tax breaks for second US headquarters

SAN FRANCISO: US cities are offering Amazon.com Inc. at least as much as $7 billion (SR26.25 billion) in tax breaks ahead of a Thursday deadline as they compete to house its second headquarters.
The world’s largest online retailer has won promises from elected officials who are eager for the $5 billion-plus investment and up to 50,000 jobs that will come with “Amazon HQ2.”
New Jersey proposed $7 billion in potential credits against state and city taxes if Amazon locates in Newark and sticks to hiring commitments, according to a Monday news release from the governor’s office.
Across the Hudson River, New York City made a proposal without incentives special for Amazon, though the state is expected to offer some, a spokesman for the city’s economic development corporation said on Wednesday.
And across the country, California is offering some $300 million in incentives over several years and other benefits, the governor said in an October 11 letter to Amazon’s Chief Executive Jeff Bezos, published online by the Orange County Register.
Dozens of cities and states have expressed interest in HQ2. Credit ratings and research company Moody’s has ranked Austin as the most likely to win based on its labor pool, costs of doing business and quality of life, among other criteria.
Austin is also the headquarters of Whole Foods Market, which Amazon recently acquired.
The city’s chamber of commerce said in a Twitter post on Wednesday that it submitted its bid for HQ2.
Amazon has said it will announce a decision for its second campus, in addition to its Seattle headquarters, next year.


JC Decaux pursues $810 million bid for Australia billboard firm APN

Updated 4 min 23 sec ago
0

JC Decaux pursues $810 million bid for Australia billboard firm APN

PARIS: French outdoor advertising company JC Decaux said it was still in talks with Australian billboard firm APN Outdoor Group over its offer to buy APN, currently worth around $810 million.
The statement from JC Decaux came after APN itself lost out in a bid for advertising firm Adshel, part of a series of deals in the lucrative Australian outdoor advertising market. The French group is one of four companies controlling an industry estimated to be worth some $660 million in Australia.
JC Decaux’s offer had in fact been conditional upon APN scrapping its $424 bid for HT&E’s Adshel outdoor advertising division Adshel. A deal for APN to buy Adshel would have increased the competitive pressure on JC Decaux’s local business.
JC Decaux, which sells ads on bus stops and billboards, has offered A$6.52 per APN share, valuing APN at around A$1.09 billion ($808.8 million).
“Until a transaction is agreed between the parties, there is no certainty that the proposal will result in any transaction. JC Decaux will continue to update the market in relation to the proposal,” JC Decaux said in a statement.
Last week, APN had called JC Decaux’s offer “modest” and had decided against backing down on its proposal to buy Adshel. In the event, APN was beaten out by rival Ooh!Media Ltd. in the fight to buy Adshel.
JC Decaux shares were up 0.5 percent on Monday, while shares in APN had been temporarily suspended.
APN and Ooh!Media rank first and second in the billboards and outdoor advertising market in Australia, according to research firm IBISWorld. JC Decaux ranks as the third-biggest in Australia, while HT&E ranks fourth.
The mergers and acquisitions activity within the Australian outdoor advertising sector has drawn close scrutiny from regulators, which had last year blocked a merger between APN and Ooh!Media.