Alphabet’s Google division has pledged to spend $7 billion on US office space and data centres this year.
Google also pledged to create 10,000 new jobs as it tackles in surge in online traffic during the Coronavirus pandemic, as well as a commitment to its home state of California.
California has been rocked by a number of big name tech firms exiting or relocating from Silicon Valley and California because of its high cost of living and local taxes.
Google outlined its plans for the year ahead in a blog post by Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai, and began by talking about people have adapted to the Coronavirus pandemic, with teachers doing virtual classes, and local shops creating online sales options.
“Google wants to be a part of that recovery,” wrote Pichai. “That’s why we plan to invest over $7 billion in offices and data centers across the US and create at least 10,000 new full-time Google jobs in the US this year. This includes investing in communities that are new to Google and expanding in others across 19 states.”
Google already employs 84,000 staff in the United States.
And Pichai announced expansion plans for data centres in five US states.
“In addition to Google offices, we’re investing in data centre expansions in Nebraska, South Carolina, Virginia, Nevada and Texas,” wrote Pichai. “Our existing data centre sites in Nebraska, Ohio, Texas and Nevada will be fully up and running in 2021.”
“Our data centres are what powers your searches, emails, photos and the maps that help you find the fastest way home; they’re also important to the fabric of local communities, from providing opportunities for supply chain partners and small businesses to supporting distance learning in South Carolina and Nevada,” he wrote.
And he pledged to spend $1 billion in California alone.
“Coming together in person to collaborate and build community is core to Google’s culture, and it will be an important part of our future,” wrote Pichai. “So we continue to make significant investments in our offices around the country, as well as our home state of California, where we will be investing over $1 billion this year.”
“Outside of the Bay Area, we’ll keep growing our offices across the US, including plans to add thousands of roles in Atlanta, Washington, DS, Chicago and New York,” wrote Pichai.
“This will help bring more jobs and investment to diverse communities as part of our previously announced racial equity commitments,” he added. “We’re already making progress: 2020 was our largest year ever for hiring Black and Latinx Googlers in the US, both overall and in tech roles.”
Google’s commitment to California is notable in light of the exits by some big name tech firms.
Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (HPE), one of the founding fathers of California’s tech homeland of Silicon Valley, announced last year it was leaving the ‘golden state’ and moving its headquarters to Texas.
Oracle also announced it was moving its corporate headquarters from California, and relocating it to the Lone Star State of Texas.
A number of other firms have already left the San Francisco Bay Area, including data-mining provider Palantir Technologies, which moved to Denver from Palo Alto.
E-cigarette maker Juul Labs also relocated to Washington from San Francisco, and Charles Schwab said last year its headquarters will move from San Francisco to Westlake, Texas.
Texas is already home for other tech firms such as Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), and Dell, among others.