The City of Cape Town has given Amazon, the US-based e-commerce tech company, the go-ahead to begin work on a R4billion development that will serve as the company’s headquarters in the country. This planned development, which will likely take between 3-5 years to complete, creates an enormous boost to the South African economy with a projection of over 5 000 jobs created through construction and up to 19 000 indirect and induced jobs on completion of the project.
Initially, when the company arrived in the country, as opposed to focusing on distribution within the country as the world’s largest online retailer, they preferred to use South Africa as a base for engineering innovative tech solutions via their cloud computing. The company’s Amazon Web Solution (AWS) opened smaller offices in Cape Town in 2015 after arriving the country in 2004. This new precinct is a show of the incredible growth they have enjoyed in South Africa through AWS. The new precinct will work as the base of operations with mixed-use buildings for both commercial and residential use. This new Amazon-anchored headquarters will have a hotel, gym, restaurants, conferencing and school and events space in addition to the office and retail space.
This new undertaking ensures several different types of jobs for South Africans. There are already over 150 jobs being advertised on the Amazon South African careers portal, mostly for engineering, software and operations positions. All this comes in addition to Amazon’s commitment in 2020 to hiring an additional 3000 staff to facilitate 24-hour support to a North America and European customer base.