Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

GE to Leave Connecticut, Relocate Offices in Boston

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

GE to Leave Connecticut, Relocate Offices in Boston

Article excerpt

HARTFORD, Conn. - General Electric announced Wednesday it will move its headquarters to Boston, leaving the sprawling suburban Connecticut campus it has called home over the past four decades for a technology-rich city it says better fits its ambitions as an innovation leader. Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt said GE, one of the best known companies in corporate America, wanted to be "at the center of an ecosystem that shares our aspirations.

Wednesday's announcement comes three years after the $130 billion high-tech global industrial company said it began considering a new composition and location for its headquarters, and more than seven months after the firm threatened to leave Connecticut, complaining about the state's tax environment.

The move was mourned in Connecticut, but Massachusetts officials rejoiced.

"We won Powerball today here in Boston by having GE come here, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said. "For two decades, we've had companies move out of our city. Now we have companies moving into our city.

Several states had been competing to lure the company from Fairfield. GE announced in June it was thinking about a move since Connecticut lawmakers passed some controversial business tax increases. The General Assembly later scaled back some of the increases after other companies, including Aetna Inc. and the Travelers Companies Inc., voiced concerns.

Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy also met with GE executives and offered an incentive package.

The company employs about 5,000 people in Connecticut, including 800 at the Fairfield location. It's unclear how many will remain in the state.

Seth Martin, a GE spokesman, said the Boston location will become home to 200 corporate employees and 600 digital industrial product managers, designers and developers. He said an unspecified number of corporate employees will stay in Connecticut and be moved to GE's offices in Norwalk. …

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