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Lowe’s could get over $72 million in taxpayer incentives for new Charlotte tech hub

In exchange for building a 23-story tech hub in South End that will employ up to 2,000 people, Lowe’s could receive over $72 million in combined state and local incentives.

That figure includes over $16 million in local grants from the city and county, and will be paid over several years as long as Lowe’s meets the job creation goals it laid out when it announced plans for its global tech hub last month, city and county spokespeople confirmed Monday.

The local incentives deal includes a Business Investment Grant of up to $6.03 million over 10 years from the city of Charlotte, according to city spokeswoman Britt Clampitt. The city’s portion could change when city council votes on the incentives deal, which will likely happen this month, she added.

The other local portion of the grant comes from the county, which could give Lowe’s up to $10.16 million over a decade, spokesman Lawrence Corley said. That figure will also have to be approved by county commissioners, he added.

As the Observer has previously reported, Lowe’s is set to receive a state incentives grant of $54 million, to be paid over 12 years as long as the Mooresville home improvement retailer meets its job creation and investment targets. Additionally, the a performance-based grant of $2 million from the state’s One North Carolina Fund will also support the project, according to Gov. Roy Cooper’s office.

In recent months, a number of large employers have announced plans to relocate to or expand in Charlotte thanks to millions in local and state incentives.

Lured by more than $87 million in incentives, Honeywell, for instance, announced plans last November to relocate its headquarters from New Jersey to Charlotte.

In December, LendingTree said it will keep its headquarters in Charlotte and add 436 high-paying jobs in exchange for $8.37 million in state incentives. Also in December, AvidXchange said it would add more than 1,200 local jobs, more than doubling its Charlotte workforce, in exchange for nearly $25 million in local and state incentives.

Lowe’s plans

Lowe’s has said it plans to create 1,600 jobs and bring about another 400 over from its headquarters office. The company will be hiring for a number of roles, including software and infrastructure engineers, data scientists, analysts, architects, user experience and user interface professionals. The average annual pay for the new positions will be more than $117,000, Lowe’s has said.

Lowes_Rendering1.jpg
Rendering of the tower Lowe’s is building for its 2,000-employee tech hub in South End Courtesy of Lowe's

Lowe’s is spending $153 million on the project, and the facility is slated to open in 2021.

When Lowe’s announced plans for its tech hub last month, CEO Marvin Ellison told reporters that the company picked Charlotte because it will enable Lowe’s to recruit highly skilled tech workers. Opening a tech hub in Charlotte, Ellison said, will also foster collaboration with corporate employees at the Lowe’s headquarters in Mooresville.

“This new technology center is going to help us transform our company into a true technology company. It will also serve as an epicenter for us to attract tech professionals and help us to modernize our company,” Ellison said.

“We also hope as a company to become a beacon to attract other world-class companies seeking technology talent to Charlotte. We think we can absolutely do that.”

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As the retail and sports business reporter for the Observer, Katie Peralta covers everything from grocery-store competition in Charlotte to tax breaks for pro sports teams. She is a Chicago native and graduate of the University of Notre Dame.
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