Four months after Washington Mutual chose San Antonio as the site for a regional operations center that will employ as many as 4,200 people...
Four months after Washington Mutual chose San Antonio as the site for a regional operations center that will employ as many as 4,200 people, the company is shopping for a second such support center.
Places on the search list include Jacksonville, Fla.; Florence, S.C.; and Irving and other towns in Texas, spokeswoman Darcy Donahoe-Wilmot said.
WaMu will need another regional operations center “to cover multiple time zones and solidify our national footprint,” Donahoe-Wilmot said. It is considering Texas again because it already has a large presence there, she said.
The Seattle-based thrift chose San Antonio in June for its first regional operations center, partly because of $20 million in cash and other incentives from the state, city and county.
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Florida appears willing to play the money game as well. This week, the Jacksonville Economic Development Commission approved $360,000 in city tax credits for WaMu. The money would be part of a $1.8 million overall tax credit if city and state officials approve the deal.
The package assumes that WaMu would add 600 jobs there by 2010, at least 90 percent of them to be filled locally, Donahoe-Wilmot said. The company would not say what responsibilities the new support center would have.
WaMu now employs 2,600 people in Jacksonville, including workers at a mortgage-loan-servicing operation and a call center, she said.
WaMu has support offices in the Puget Sound area, California, Florida, Illinois, South Carolina and Texas. They have more limited responsibilities than the new regional operations center.
Melissa Allison: 206-464-3312 or firstname.lastname@example.org