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UPDATE 1-Amazon kicks off recruiting and leases office for Virginia 'HQ2'

Jeffrey Dastin

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April 29 (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc on Monday said it had leased office space and posted several jobs for its second headquarters outside Washington, D.C., the start of more than a decade of investment and hiring that cities across North America had sought.

In a blog post, the world's largest online retailer said it was on track to create 400 jobs at the future Arlington, Virginia campus this year. It said the new hires will work out of a temporary space on Crystal Drive in June, as the company aims to open its first building in the fall.

These jobs had been coveted by hundreds of communities from Canada to Mexico since 2017, when Seattle-based Amazon announced it would spend more than $5 billion and create up to 50,000 positions at a second campus dubbed 'HQ2.'

The company ultimately split the prize between greater Washington and New York, the U.S. political and financial capitals, after more than a year of contestants' publicity stunts and promises of tax breaks to garner Amazon's attention. It later scrapped its New York plans after local opposition. (Reporting by Jeffrey Dastin in San Francisco; editing by Tom Brown and Phil Berlowitz)