Source: Urvaksh Karkaria, Atlanta Business Chronicle
Metro Atlanta’s logistics industry is booming as retail gets Amazonified.
Eden Prairie, Minn.-based C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc. (Nasdaq: CHRW) plans to create more than 200 jobs over the next few years and consolidate into new digs in downtown Atlanta.
Later this year, the third-party logistics provider (3PL) will consolidate two Metro Atlanta offices (Duluth and East Point) into 20,000 square-foot at Centennial Tower, a 36-story office tower in downtown’s gentrifying Fairlie-Poplar district.
The new office will be part of C.H. Robinson’s North American Surface Transportation business unit and house sales, account management and brokerage teams.
As a 3PL, C.H. Robinson does not own assets, such trucks and aircraft. Instead, it contracts with carriers to move its customers’ freight across North America.
Atlanta is a top-five market in terms of workforce for C.H. Robinson, which is ranked No. 212 on the Fortune 500. The company, which has been in Atlanta for 52 years, also has offices at Fulton-Industrial and Hartsfield-Jackson International Atlanta Airport.
“It makes sense for us to capitalize on the strengths and capabilities that we’ve built here to…strengthen our footprint in the Atlanta market,” Atlanta General Manager Kartik Deodhar said Friday.
Indeed. Metro Atlanta — the business and distribution center of the Southeast — is a major supply chain and logistics hub. The region is home to more than 12,300 logistics providers that employ more than 150,000 people, according to the Metro Atlanta Chamber.
The region is drawing several industry expansions.
On July 19, Atlanta Business Chronicle first reported Coyote Logistics’ plans to add 325 jobs in a new Atlanta sales and customer services hub. Coyote, acquired by United Parcel Service Inc. (NYSE:UPS) for $1.8 billion in 2015, has leased nearly 50,000 square feet at Armour Yards — a 300,000-square-foot loft-office development targeted at tech and media companies, such as FullStory and Influence Health.
Meanwhile, San Francisco-based logistics technology firm Flexport Inc. will invest up to $100 million in an Atlanta expansion that will create more than 200 jobs over the next several years. The company is scouting for about 25,000 square feet of office space in Midtown and plans to open a 100,000-square-foot warehouse near Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
Metro Atlanta is an industry tech hub. Seven of the world’s top 10 supply chain management software suppliers have headquarters or offices in metro Atlanta, including Manhattan Associates Inc. (Nasdaq: MANH) and Chainalytics.
Following the relocation, C.H. Robinson will have 40,000 square feet of office space and about 135,000 square-feet of leased warehouse space in metro Atlanta.
The downtown relocation is about talent recruitment and retention. Atlanta is a market that warrants additional investment, Deodhar said.
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