MetLife to bring 2,600 jobs to Cary, Charlotte

Posted March 7, 2013

— Financial services giant MetLife Group Inc. will bring more than 2,600 jobs to Cary and Charlotte over the next three years after receiving more than $90 million in state incentives.

MetLife plans to invest $125.5 million to consolidate its global technology campus in Cary and its U.S. retail business campus in Charlotte, officials said Thursday.

"This is a good day for North Carolina. This is a good day for jobs in North Carolina," Gov. Pat McCrory said. "It's fantastic news for people looking for work."

The jobs will be evenly split between the two campuses. They will include product management, marketing, sales and customer support in Charlotte and information technology positions in Cary to support MetLife and its customers.

An undisclosed number of those jobs are moving from MetLife operations in Lowell and Boston, Mass.; Somerset, N.J.; Bloomfield, Conn.; Johnstown, Pa.; Warwick, R.I.; and Aliso Viejo and Irvine, Calif., officials said.

Spokesman John Calagna said the company employs about 23,000 U.S. administrative staffers, and the consolidation will allow teams to work together in the same location while cutting MetLife's real estate presence.

Joe Bryan, chairman of the Wake County Board of Commissioners, and Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht were giddy over the prospect of about 1,300 new jobs in the area.

"This is a chamber of commerce day, wouldn't you say?" Bryan said. "As it's rolled out over this three-year period, it will have the potential to rival any investment that we've had here in Wake County."

"They could have gone anywhere, but they chose North Carolina and they chose Cary," Weinbrecht said. "For that, we're truly grateful."

Harvey Schmitt MetLife jobs promise economic boost beyond Cary

MetLife presser Incentives helped NC land MetLife jobs

The location of the Cary campus is still being negotiated, Weinbrecht said, noting local incentives for the project haven't yet been approved.

The average salary for the Cary jobs will top $100,000, plus benefits, officials said.

McCrory said the state also will benefit from MetLife's corporate culture of encouraging civic involvement by employees.

"It's not just getting people employed, it's getting them involved," he said.

About 150 MetLife employees already work in Charlotte, and company officials said they chose North Carolina for the consolidation after a nine-month search because of access to universities and a low cost of living.

The largest incentives package from the state in more than six years also likely played a role in luring the company to North Carolina.

The state Economic Investment Committee voted Thursday morning to approve a Job Development Investment Grant of up to $87.2 million for MetLife. Under the grant, the company is able to receive a rebate of 75 percent of the state withholding tax on its new jobs over a 12-year period if it meets set hiring and investment targets each year.

The company must have at least 1,474 jobs in North Carolina by the end of 2014 and at least 2,098 by the end of 2015 to qualify for the tax rebate. For every year after that through 2025, it must maintain at least 2,098 jobs in the state. The jobs, which don't include the MetLife employees already in Charlotte, also must have a minimum average salary of $65,513.

MetLife also qualified for up to $2 million from the One North Carolina Fund, which provides financial assistance to attract business projects to the state. Local governments must match the grant, and the company receives no upfront money and must meet hiring and investment targets to obtain the funds.

Wake Technical Community College and Central Piedmont Community College also chipped in an estimated $4 million in worker training classes.

Google won a $240 million package of state and local incentives in late 2006 to build a data center in Lenoir. Fidelity Investments received $70 million in incentives that same year for a 2,000-employee operation in Research Triangle Park.


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  • Bendal1 Mar 8, 2013

    I wonder if MetLife will bail on the state once the tax break holiday and sweetheart deals end, just like Dell did a few years ago. Of course the company will claim low revenue as the reason, but it's clear these corporations are just going around leeching off of states eager to say they added jobs and not corporate tax revenue, and once the tax breaks are gone they'll close shop and move to another state they can get breaks in.

  • andy2 Mar 8, 2013

    Triumph - How do you figure that? The withholding is the revenue stream. But that does not bother me, what really bothers me is the relationship McCrory has with the company that brokered the deal. His employer and his minions at the capitol are saying he had nothing to do with it.

  • Triumph Mar 8, 2013

    It is incredible to read these comments and see how misinformed (stupid) the average WRAL web forum reader must be regarding state financial incentives and busienss recruitment. The primary state incentives is a reimbursement of a portion of the employee withholdiong taxes that Met Life will pay its own additional employees over many years. it costs the state NOTHING! And, Met Life must guaranteee it will preserve/maintain its existing workforce as well.

  • goldenosprey Mar 8, 2013

    Thank you Gov Pat!!!"-computer trainer

    ..for absolutely nothing! You had squat to do with it.

    Where are the jobs that don't rob the state coffers and offer employment to actual North Carolinians, Mr. Tillis?

  • Whatthehey Mar 8, 2013

    I'm starting a list of the Top Ten things about this deal that stink. Feel free to add to it.

    Number 10: Take 90 million dollars of NC citizens' money from state agencies and employees who provide services to all of us (e.g. our teachers are paid at level 46th lowest in the nation) and give the money to a private for-profit company with headquarters in NY (and banks goodness-knows-where) so they can MOVE employees to NC - i.e., not CREATE more jobs here. What could 90 million have done to help real NORTH CAROLINA businesses expand (i.e., CREATE jobs)??

  • westernwake1 Mar 8, 2013

    Let's take a look at a typical incentive deal in North Carolina - The Dell Manufacturing Plant in Forsyth County. $318 million in incentives and the plant does not even last 5 years. Of course it never reached anywhere near its required employment levels.

    It is time for North Carolina to STOP spending money on incentives to bring large conmpanies in from out of state. These programs have been huge failures and a waste of tax payer money. The incentive money would have been better spent to assist existing small businesses in our state.

    Former Supreme Court justice, Bob Orr, is quite correct in stating that the incentives are absurd and practice needs to be stopped.

  • eddybal Mar 8, 2013

    Unfortunately, these are not jobs created, these are jobs relocated at what it seems to be 90 million of tax payer expenses.

  • oakcity Mar 8, 2013

    "Pat creates jobs and all you can come up with is conspiracy theories and sour grapes."

    but he didn't create these jobs!!!!!!

    tell me exactly how he did this, how did he create these jobs in his 2.5 months in office?

    this was in the works for 8 MONTHS. and don't say its because of his work with that law firm, because he didn't work for them then, he was busy runny for election.

    i agree, bev was a real letdown, and yes maybe the worse governor we've ever had. but you CANNOT say that he created these jobs, because he had NOTHING to do with it.

  • tasfrog Mar 8, 2013

    move 2595 workers in,,, move 2595 deadbeats out.... sounds like major progress to me

  • westernwake1 Mar 8, 2013

    Sadly this also means that North Carolina is simply viewed as the onshore place to go for cheap labor... because the people in Cary and Charlotte will work for half of what the company pays elsewhere. westernwake1

    'Your comment just proves that you deadbeats wont work regardless if there are jobs out there or not. This is a good thing for the state and you cant stand it because it was a republican keeping his promise.

    You lost get over it.' - Crumps Br0ther

    Wow. what an incredible assertion and personal attack to make in a public forum when someone points out the reason these jobs are being relocated. North Carolina is effectively a low-cost labor center in the U.S. for white-collar jobs.

    P.S. I voted for McCrory and believe that Bev was possibly the worse governor in our state's history.