Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Liberty Mutual - 5,000 New Jobs to Plano, Texas

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An aerial of the proposed $2 billion Legacy West development.13 photos









After months of speculation, Boston-basedLiberty Mutual confirms its is bringing up to 5,000 jobs to a new campus at Plano's $2 billion Legacy West development by 2017.
The employees will be consolidated from other parts of the country into LibertyMutual's new Plano campus, which was recently identified as one of six hubs for the insurance company as it seeks to better serve its domestic insurance clients.
"We are exploring options to build a new campus in Plano in the Legacy West area,"Liberty Mutual spokesman John Cusolitotold the Dallas Business Journal."We intend to have up to 5,000 employees in this new campus. This will not replace our home office, which is in Boston."
Last week, Cusolito told the DBJ the company had no North Texas expansion plans beyond a small call center operation, which would employ "several hundred employees."
Liberty Mutual recently leased a two-story, 159,000-square-foot call center along the Dallas North Tollway for a call center. Those workers will be moved to the new campus when it is completed, he said.
The new campus is part of Liberty Mutual's larger expansion plan, which includes hiring 25,000 to 35,000 workers in the next five years for a combination of new jobs and positions expected to open as people retire, Cusolito said. Liberty Mutual employs more than 50,000 workers in more than 900 offices throughout the world.
"We are in the process of completing several critical steps for this new campus," Cusolito said, though he declined to specify the steps.
The 5,000 jobs in Plano would be a combination of current employees in Dallas-Fort Worth, the new call center workers and new jobs becoming available with the company in North Texas, Cusolito said.
"We are evaluating how we will populate that new operation," Cusolito said. "From what we know today, we will bring the employees in the new call center into this operation. This new campus will have operations besides a call center and we are looking at which employees make the most sense for the new campus."
Liberty Mutual is in discussions with the City of Plano about possible tax incentives for the campus. Cusolito said a public hearing on an incentive package is expected in the next month. The incentive package could be worth several million dollars, based on other large company moves into the municipality.
"We are having earnest discussions with Liberty Mutual to accommodate anywhere from 4,000 to 5,000 employees at a Plano campus," said Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere. "We are excited about these conversations to bring a high-quality company to the city."
Plano already has half a dozen companies with more than 3,000 employees, includingToyota North America (once its new North American headquarters campus is completed),Capital One, Bank of America and Hewlett-Packard. Liberty Mutual would join that elite group, LaRosiliere said.
"This is further evidence that the Legacy Business Park is the premiere place where companies want to be because we have the amenities and services for their employees," he said. "Plano is the total package and we have what people want."
Legacy West is a $2 billion, 240-acre corporate magnet that already counts Toyota and FedEx Office among its soon-to-be tenants. The Liberty Mutual campus is expected to be roughly 1 million square feet of office space, which could be spread throughout two office towers. The company expects to unveil designs later.
"This is huge to the area," Legacy West developer Fehmi Karahan said. "The development of the site is already being prepared for this at the Tollway and Headquarters (Drive), which is the proposed location. They still have some things they need to do with the city."
Dallas-based KDC is the developer of the project. KDC is also developing the corporate offices for Toyota and FedEx Office.

Staff Writer-Dallas Business Journal