Last month, Amazon unveiled its new fulfillment center in North Pekin, Illinois, bringing hundreds of regional jobs and significantly boosting our local economy. With this latest addition, North Pekin proudly joins the company’s impressive network of 110 fulfillment centers across the United States, with 20 in Illinois. This facility also joins Amazon’s R4R (Rural 4 Rural) centers aimed at bringing the same level of delivery services in big cities to rural America. But what exactly does Amazon’s presence in Greater Peoria mean for us economically?
Looking at the bigger picture, Amazon is a global powerhouse that has single-handedly created more jobs in the United States over the last decade than any other company1. Their impressive investments in infrastructure and employee compensation have amounted to a staggering $530 billion poured into the U.S. economy since 20102. With its expansive reach, Amazon can multiply the impact of any local economy, generating a wealth of additional jobs due to the manpower needed to run its facilities.
This is known as the Amazon effect, where the mere presence of the company can help local businesses thrive through their growth and investments. Here are some fascinating statistics for just Illinois;
- $15+ billion added to Illinois’ GDP thanks to Amazon investments
- 43,000+ full- and part-time jobs created in Illinois (as of Q4 2021) —and they continue to hire
- 54,000+ indirect jobs supported on top of their direct hires in Illinois (based on Input-Output methodology developed by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis)
- 49,000+ small and medium business sellers and independent authors in Illinois growing their businesses with Amazon
Gaining perspective and recognizing the significance of Amazon’s presence in Illinois is vital in understanding why their recent expansion into the Greater Peoria region is a cause for great excitement. If you don’t believe us, take it from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce President Chris Deverman.
“This opens up the opportunities for many more businesses, whether they’d be the same type of business or others to come to the area,” said Deverman. “I think it’s a huge anchor point for our region. I’m not talking about just the Pekin/North Pekin area; we’re talking about Central Illinois. Whether it be new jobs or businesses supporting the workers here, it’s a huge draw.”
The previously vacant 90,785-square-foot warehouse now serves as the “last mile” delivery facility, a key distribution point in Amazon’s extensive transportation network, effectively bridging the gap between the e-commerce giant and its rural Amazon Prime customers in the region. The last mile is a simple term Amazon uses for their final touch point between themselves and their customers. “Our ‘last mile’ delivery network accounts for over 50% of our shipments in the U.S. and globally,” said Caitlin Polochak, Regional Public Relations Manager for Amazon.
While initial stages will be modest within their fulfillment center, with only 30 part-time and 13 salaried employees/managers on-site for their opening day back on February 9th, the plan is to increase their employee count to 200 by the end of the year.
We are thrilled by the enthusiasm and commitment of all parties involved in this partnership. As we look forward to the future, we invite you to share in our excitement as we work to build a strong and mutually beneficial relationship with the retail giant. We are optimistic that our collaboration will contribute to the growth and economic prosperity of the region, building on the impressive track record of success that this partnership has already demonstrated.
We look forward to the many opportunities that lie ahead and to realizing the full potential of this partnership in the years to come.
This blog is authored by Adrian Garces, our Communications & Marketing Intern.