- Nestlé USA will move its U.S. headquarters right outside of Washington, D.C. to Rosslyn, VA, adding approximately 750 jobs to the area, according to The Washington Post.
- The world’s largest packaged food company will take space in the region’s tallest building, and said it was lured to the area due to its proximity to lawmakers, regulators and lobbyists, plus more than $16 million in state and county subsidies.
- Nestlé will move from its current headquarters in Glendale, CA, where it has received some bad press in recent years for bottling water during the state’s record multi-year drought.
In recent years, Conagra Brands, General Electric, Marriott and Motorola have all relocated their corporate headquarters. Analysts say there are many reasons companies choose to move, but the major motivation for some is that it’s a great way to rebrand and change consumer perception.
It may seem that the backlash Nestle suffered for bottling water during a water crisis would be the main reason for its decision to move coast to coast, but execs at the company claim it has more to do with finances. The company is getting tax credit and the D.C.-area office space is cheaper than what it occupies now.
According to Paul Grimwood, Nestlé USA’s chairman and CEO, the move had a lot to do with being closer to D.C. and its stakeholders on Capitol Hill. He added that Northern Virginia’s incentive package, combined with easy access to transportation and the area’s reputation for good public schools, were factors in the decision.
While a coast-to-coast move may be inconvenient for employees, better access to government could help the company get its voice heard and considered — especially as changes to major labeling laws, including revamping the Nutrition Facts panel and required labels for GMOs, are going to be discussed and enacted in the near future.