Amazon opens Manchester office, recruits 1,000 staff

Amazon opens Manchester office, recruits 1,000 staff

Amazon is opening a new 90,000 sq ft corporate office in Manchester next year, for 600 fresh employees, along with boosting its development centres in Edinburgh and Cambridge.

Billed as a "a major investment boost to UK innovation”, the announcement from the e-retail giant has detailed plans for a six-storey office in Manchester’s Northern Quarter with capacity for 600 corporate and research and development (R&D) roles, as well as boosting the development centre in Scotland and Cambridge through 250 and 180 additional roles respectively. 

The new Manchester office will be based in the Northern Quarter’s Hanover Building and be 90,000 sq ft.

It will house "highly-skilled teams [who] will work on projects benefiting Amazon’s customers around the world, including software development, machine learning and R&D - complementing existing work at Development Centres in London, Cambridge and Edinburgh,” the company said.

Amazon will also expand its development centre in Edinburgh, providing capacity for more than 250 new "highly-skilled" roles. The expansion provides Amazon with three floors in the city’s Waverley Gate building. The new roles will join existing software engineers, machine learning scientists and user experience designers as the teams in Edinburgh work on new advertising technology and personalised shopping recommendations for Amazon customers.

Meanwhile the Cambridge development centre will also recruit for 180 more employees. The centre houses R&D teams that bring new innovations such as the Alexa and Prime Air (a future delivery system to distribute packages in 30 minutes or less using drones) and core machine learning and retail systems.

The expansion follows the opening of the organisation's new UK 15-storey head office and development centre in Shoreditch, east London, in July last year as well as the expansion of the company’s development centre in Cambridge last November. Additionally, the company has 17 fulfilment centres and over 40 delivery stations in the UK. In total Amazon now has more than 100 buildings to run its businesses and deliver goods and services to customers.

Amazon said it had invested more than £9.3 bn in the UK to build and run its operations since 2010, and is on course to grow to 27,500 roles - including over 6,500 roles in its corporate, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and R&D divisions - by the end of this year.

“With the UK taking a leading role in our global innovation, we are delighted to announce plans to create capacity for over 1,000 new highly-skilled roles across the country,” said Doug Gurr, UK country manager, Amazon. “These are Silicon Valley jobs in Britain, and further cement our long-term commitment to the UK.”

Trade secretary Liam Fox was on hand to contribute a supportive quote, saying: “Ensuring that the world’s best and brightest companies continue to invest and innovate in the UK is at the heart of our Global Britain agenda. Amazon’s decision to create hundreds of highly-skilled jobs in Manchester, Edinburgh and Cambridge is an enormous vote of confidence in the UK and a signal to the world that the UK is very much open for business.”

An Amazon spokesperson said there was no confirmed date for the opening of the new Manchester office but that the new roles would be recruited for imminently.