By Jerry Underwood
Made in Alabama
Landing, a company building a nationwide network of fully furnished apartments available to those in its membership model, plans to relocate its headquarters from San Francisco to Birmingham, where it will create 816 new full-time jobs as it accelerates growth plans.
Landing’s move is made possible by a partnership forged with the State of Alabama, Jefferson County and the City of Birmingham. The hiring boom will increase Landing’s total workforce in Alabama to 900 and the company’s total employment to over 1,000 nationwide over several years.
“Landing is a fast-growing company with an innovative business model, and we are thrilled that it will establish its headquarters in Alabama,” Governor Kay Ivey said in an announcement today.
“This is great news for Birmingham and for the entire state because it shows that we have the workforce and capabilities needed by a cutting-edge company that is blazing new trails,” she added.
Today’s announcement comes after a milestone year for Landing, which has witnessed a surge in demand for flexible living that powered its rapid expansion across the country.
In the past year, the company has experienced 1,250% growth and has expanded from just nine cities in early 2020 to over 80 today, with plans to be in more than 100 by year’s end.
“As a Birmingham native, relocating our headquarters and expanding our Alabama team was a natural transition,” said Bill Smith, founder and CEO of Landing. “I’m excited by the opportunity to continue to scale Landing and bring new jobs and economic opportunities to my community.
“As we continue to expand across the country, we’re committed to the vibrant cities we operate in and will strive to have a positive impact on all of Landing’s communities,” Smith added.
Smith previously started Birmingham-based Shipt, an app-based delivery service that grew rapidly and was acquired by Target Corp. in 2017.
“This will undoubtedly be one of the largest headquarter relocations in the nation this year.”
With roots in Birmingham, Landing’s relocation demonstrates the company’s commitment to Alabama –– bringing new economic opportunity and jobs to the region. The economic impact of Landing’s growth is projected to be significant.
An analysis by the Alabama Department of Commerce estimates the financial benefits of Landing’s relocation and expansion project over 20 years:
- Total new payroll: $1.3 billion
- Total new state revenue: $112 million
- Return on investment to the state: 356%
“Bill Smith is a rock star in Alabama’s innovation economy through his experience with Shipt, and Landing represents an interesting new chapter in a business career that has already produced massive success,” said Greg Canfield, Secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.
“The company is off to a strong start, and Birmingham will offer a solid platform for its growth plans as it shakes up the real estate industry.”
Landing is taking advantage of an apartment rental industry that has long been ripe for innovation — more flexibility, convenience and guaranteed quality. Landing provides renters with a more flexible living experience and gives its members the freedom to move around as often as they like, without the hassles of strict leases, upfront security deposits, utility set-ups or furniture moving.
Following the surge in remote work and desire for more flexible living this past year, Smith scaled the company to meet exponential demand, increasing Landing’s network of available apartments from 500 in early 2020 to more than 10,000 today.
As part of an economic incentive package to recruit Landing to relocate its headquarters, the State of Alabama committed funds through the Alabama Jobs Act and training services through AIDT, the state’s primary workforce development agency, which provides assistance with recruitment, talent development, and on-the-job training.
Pending approval by the Birmingham City Council, the City of Birmingham has committed funds through its Talent Investment Program (TIP), Talent Acceleration Program (TAP), and Talent Optimization Program (TOP) – programs aimed at professional skill development, hiring local talent, and attracting talent in tough-to-recruit occupations. Jefferson County has committed funds tied to new job creation, pending approval by the Jefferson County Commission.
“The new jobs and revenue that the Landing project brings are a major development as we continue our recovery from the devastating impact of the pandemic,” said Cornell Wesley, the City of Birmingham’s director of Innovation and Economic Opportunity.
“The financial incentive we offer, pending the City Council’s approval, will help to hire and train our citizens for the more than 800 new jobs, and the revenue generated by the project will provide funding for City schools and infrastructure assistance throughout the City.”
“In Jefferson County’s expanding technology ecosystem, we are delighted that Landing has chosen to relocate their headquarters to our region,” said Jefferson County Commissioner Steve Ammons, chairman of the commission’s Economic Development Committee.
“This is just another example of how we are working together toward common goals and improving the access to quality jobs at an above-average wage. We are pleased to have Landing as a community partner and look forward to seeing their continued growth,” Ammons added.
Landing’s new headquarters will be located in downtown Birmingham at the John Hand Building. Persons interested in joining the Landing team can visit: www.hellolanding.com/jobs.
“Landing’s headquarter relocation to Birmingham speaks volumes about the quality of talent and support services found in the region and our ability to continue to attract and grow technology companies in Alabama,” said Ron Kitchens, chief executive of the Birmingham Business Alliance.
“This will undoubtedly be one of the largest headquarter relocations in the nation this year and we are incredibly grateful to Bill Smith and the Landing leadership team for their belief and trust in Birmingham.”
This story originally appeared on the Alabama Department of Commerce’s Made in Alabama website.