October 28, 2014, 11:41 AM

Amazon will open its first warehouse in Illinois

The e-retail giant also announced today it will invest $75 million in the state to build the facility and add 1,000 full-time jobs in Illinois.

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Amazon.com Inc., No. 1 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, announced today it will build it first warehouse in Illinois, adding more than 1,000 full-time jobs in Illinois. The retailer will invest $75 million investment in the state.

The facility is set to open in 2015, and the 1,000 additional jobs will be added by 2017. "It’s been my pleasure to work closely with Amazon on my Marketplace Fairness Act, and I couldn’t be more pleased that the company has chosen to make this substantial investment in our state, announcing 1,000 jobs with good benefits right off the bat and an opportunity to expand in the future," says Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL). The new warehouse will mean Amazon will start charging sales tax to Illinois consumers. Law applying to web retailers ties in-state collection of sales taxes for web purchases with a merchant’s presence in the state—that can include not only warehouses but offices or stores.

The Marketplace Fairness Act would require all but the smallest online retailers to collect sales taxes on online purchases. Amazon has been a supporters of a national law requiring online sales tax collection for the past several years, a switch in position that coincided with it building more warehouses around the country, and thus incurring more liability to collect sales tax.

The addition of Illinois to the list of states where consumers pay sales tax on Amazon would bring the total to 23—71.94% of consumers in the U.S. Most recently, Amazon began collecting sales tax in Minnesota, though it has not announced a warehouse in that state. Generally, when Amazon started collecting taxes in other states, it also announced it was building warehouses—such was the case in California earlier this year.

Amazon operates more than 100 warehouses around the world and maintains nearly 50 million square feet of fulfillment space in North America, according to Scot Wingo, CEO of ChannelAdvisor Corp., which helps retailers sell on Amazon, and Colin Sebastian, a longtime Amazon observer and e-commerce analyst who works for Robert W. Baird and Co.


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