A Maine Racetrack Didn't Lure Amazon. Multiply That Disappointment by 218.

“Very disappointed,” pronounced a Bay Area Council, that had submitted a bid on seductiveness of San Francisco and 4 adjacent cities.

Amazon’s recurrent enterprise to greatfully a business has combined a fearsome sell juggernaut and finished a founder, Jeff Bezos, a richest male in a world. This clarity of beating in a company, however transitory it competence prove, is something new.

Yet it was maybe unavoidable after a approach Amazon incited a hunt for a second headquarters, which it announced in a fire of broadside in September, into such a beauty contest. Even with stagnation low, a batch marketplace sepulchral and a economy chugging along, a awaiting of alighting as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs from Amazon worried a fad of politicians everywhere.

“When they rolled this suspicion out, a slight outline they used unequivocally customarily tangible about 30 cities,” pronounced Mr. Phillips of Day 1, referring to how Amazon had pronounced it was looking for a civil area in North America with during slightest a million people, among other criteria. “Maybe they truly suspicion customarily 30 cities would apply. The fact that 238 did substantially hold them off-guard.”

Scarborough, for instance, was substantially not on Amazon’s radar. It is on a Northeast coast, only south of Portland, race about 20,000. The simplicity of a focus process, that concerned responding 9 questions, providing information and touting a city, “encouraged us and several hundred others who did not have a viable possibility to make a strongest probable evidence because it should be us,” pronounced Mr. Hall, a city manager. “There’s value in meditative and articulating that.”


Boxcars in Rochester. “This news is positively disappointing,” a group that promoted Rochester and Buffalo pronounced in a matter after Amazon upheld them over.

Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

Another cause during play: a clarity that Amazon was dynamic to grasp dominance, so because not join up?


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“This new domicile is merely a stop on their highway to tellurian conquest,” Mr. Hall said. He remarkable that so many people in Scarborough perceived goodies from Amazon during a holidays that even now, in a third week of January, a internal recycling core was impressed with card packaging.

Mr. Hall pronounced he had perceived “no word whatsoever” from Amazon about a predestine of his application. An Amazon orator said, “All a cities perceived approach communication from Amazon, including many personal phone calls.”

Many of a other also-rans did not wish to talk.

Jason Lary, a mayor of Stonecrest, Ga., who had offered to emanate a city named Amazon and make Mr. Bezos “the mayor, C.E.O., king, whatever they wish to call it,” did not lapse calls. A mouthpiece for Tucson, that had also applied, said, “We are in an all-day off-site meeting,” adding that she could not be interviewed.

The letdown followed a rush of antics by cities opposite North America to tempt a tradesman with taxation breaks and broadside stunts.

Business leaders in Tucson had attempted to mail Amazon a 21-foot cactus, that a association declined. The mayor of Washington posted a video of herself seeking her Amazon Alexa where a domicile should go. (The answer was of march Washington.) Business propagandize students in Philadelphia had a new task assignment: Write to Amazon seeking it to come. Mayors flew out to Seattle to ramble a corporate campus.


Scarborough, Me., had due converting a 500-acre strap racing lane to woo Amazon. It was “the longest of prolonged shots,” a city manager, Tom Hall, said.

Robert F. Bukaty/Associated Press

The biggest leader in all this, of course, was Amazon. The hunt has led to feel-good stories in internal papers around a country, a manoeuvre for Amazon’s open family appurtenance when many are heedful of Mr. Bezos’ flourishing resources and power.

For Art Rolnick, an economist during a University of Minnesota, a preference routine — that will continue for months — is “reality show” theatrics and should not be celebrated, he said.

Amazon, he said, “wants to get a top bid and top funding possible, so now a 20 finalist cities will go correct their bids.”


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“From a internal indicate of view, it looks like pursuit origination in your community,” Mr. Rolnick added. “From a inhabitant perspective, it creates no sense.”

Some inaugurated officials pronounced a reality-show philharmonic was an alleviation on a approach business is customarily done.

“It was like ‘The Apprentice,’” a uncover about employing and banishment that President Trump starred in, pronounced Tulsa’s mayor, G. T. Bynum. “I desired a process. Amazon, to their credit, finished it a open and pure one. Nine out of 10 times, when we have corporate relocation interest, we have to pointer so many nondisclosure agreements we don’t even know what association is interested.”

Not all a field felt a routine was transparent. Amazon expelled a sum series of proposals though not where they were from, that caused some latter-day confusion. Mr. Phillips of Day 1 pronounced he had gotten a receipt from Federal Express for delivering his offer in Oct and never listened from Amazon after that.

One possibility: a association did not take some applications quite seriously. An Amazon orator declined to explain this point.

However awkward a process, Amazon competence have unleashed something.

Apple, that has been criticized for doing many of a prolongation in China, announced this week that it would open a new domestic campus. (Apple did not discuss a location.) Taking advantage of a new Republican taxation plan, that allows a one-time repatriation of cash, Apple signaled it would move behind many of a $252 billion in money that it hold abroad and supplement 20,000 new jobs in a United States.

“Second domicile are a thing of a destiny — a companies are removing too large for a singular market,” pronounced Jeff Cheney, a mayor of Frisco, Tex., a city nearby Dallas that had a losing bid for Amazon’s second headquarters.

Beyond any clarity of beating among a losers, then, was a feeling of expectation.

“If Amazon is not peaceful to pitch for a fences in Oklahoma and build a city, maybe Alibaba” — a Chinese internet tradesman — “is willing,” pronounced Mr. Phillips. His efforts to build a corporate city, he said, will continue.

There is, however, a problem of a name. “Day 1” is a pet countenance of Mr. Bezos, symbolizing how his company’s opportunities are always right in front of it.


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“We’ll substantially demeanour for a improved brand,” Mr. Phillips said, and afterwards reconsidered. “If someone wants to take on Amazon, maybe gripping it ‘Day 1’ will offer a combined ability to disaster with Bezos’ conduct a little.”

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