The Toronto Region has released their reply to the famous Amazon HQ2 RFP. The Vancouver Economic Commission says no to this for Metro Vancouver’s submission.
Update: Amazon says that it has received 238 proposals, from the US, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico.
The Toronto submission is a 97-page PDF. But the overriding thrust of their pitch is clear from the cover letter: People, People, People. Did we mention People?? Oh yeah, for sure. People.
Plus we’re really good on the other stuff too, it says elsewhere. And look, people on bikes.
Toronto Region Amazon RFP Submission
Excerpt from cover letter.
Amazon is a knowledge company. Your lifeblood is skilled and creative people. Your RFP is not simply a request for real estate opportunities; it is a call out for a partner who can ensure your most vital and greatest asset of all: talent.
The diﬀerence between the Toronto Region and everywhere else is that we have the unparalleled ability to grow, attract, and retain talent — a massive, futureproofed pipeline of highly-educated and diverse talent that Amazon requires to fulfill its strategic objectives.
This submission makes an extensive business case for the advantages our Region oﬀers to meet and exceed your ambitions. In this letter, we present the case for why we can supply Amazon with the quantity and quality of talent you require, at a cost that gives you a competitive edge.
We grow talent. We have the most educated workforce in the OECD and are home to some of its best schools. Ontario is making North America’s biggest investments in first-class education. We are already one of the leading jurisdictions in STEM talent, and we are doubling down. The Ontario Government has taken accelerated steps to make a firm commitment to Amazon and all other businesses in the province: It will increase the number of post-secondary students graduating in STEM disciplines by 25% over the next five years, from 40,000 to 50,000 graduates, and the number of Master’s students graduating in applied artificial intelligence disciplines to 1,000 within five years. We are building the workforce of the future.
We attract talent. Our growth has been built on immigration. Thirty-nine percent of the Toronto Region — and 51% of Toronto proper—are born outside of Canada. We welcome more new immigrants each year than New York, LA, and Chicago combined. We speak over 180 languages and dialects. Toronto is heralded as the most multicultural city in the world, and our labour force and economy benefit directly from our diversity and inclusivity. We build doors, not walls. And those doors open to highly-skilled economic immigrants and international students who can easily become permanent residents and citizens.
We retain talent. The Toronto Region leads North America on almost every important quality of life metric, including safety, crime, healthcare, education, housing, culture, and entertainment. Millennials are settling here at the same rate as in San Francisco. We are progressive and exciting, which is why our Region’s companies retain talent. People want to live here.