Hewlett-Packard to Bring 1,200 Jobs to Conway


Hewlett-Packard to Bring 1,200 Jobs to Conway
Hewlett-Packard Co. of Palo Alto, Calif., will announce Thursday its intention to open a facility in Conway that will employ about 1,200 people, multiple sources have told ArkansasBusiness.com.
Hewlett-Packard Co. of Palo Alto, Calif., will announce Thursday its intention to open a facility in Conway that will employ about 1,200 people, multiple sources have told ArkansasBusiness.com.

Few details have been available, and Hewlett-Packard declined comment, but here's what the sources say:

Gov. Mike Beebe, who will attend an 11:30 a.m. press conference scheduled for Thursday at the University of Central Arkansas, will kick in "quick strike" incentives for HP to locate in The Meadows Office & Technology Park. The first employees are expected to be on the job in mid-2009.

One source said the payroll when the operation is at full employment should be about $60 million a year, indicating an average salary of $50,000 and suggesting that this will not be a "call center" type of operation. The source said HP would be hiring "techs and geeks."

The good news will come just two weeks after a major blow to central Arkansas' technology work force: the impending sale of Alltel Corp. of Little Rock to Verizon.

It may also shed some light on the comments by state Rep. Robbie Wills, D-Conway and incoming Speaker of the House, in the "Forty Under Forty" feature in Monday's Arkansas Business. In it, Wills said he wanted to revisit Amendment 82, which provides incentives for "super projects" that involve investments of at least $500 million.

"Amendment 82 is really geared toward the large manufacturing jobs, and we really have some opportunity with knowledge-based industries that will never meet the investment thresholds but really provide good, high-paying jobs," Wills said.

Hewlett-Packard is among the world's largest IT companies, posting $107.7 billion in revenue for fiscal year ending Jan. 31. The company ranked No. 14 on the 2007 Fortune 500 list. Mark Hurd is the president and CEO.

THVideo: Click here to see video of Arkansas Business' report on Hewlett-Packard on "Today's THV at Noon."