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Zoom to launch new research and development center near ASU

The greater Phoenix area is one of two new research and development centers for the company


"To cope with this sudden flip in my everyday life, I’ve decided to document my new class schedule, complete with the hilarious and infuriating moments that I encounter daily as a student at Zoom University." Illustration published Thursday, March 5, 2020. 

The videoconferencing company Zoom announced today that it will be opening a new research and development center in the greater Phoenix area and in Pittsburgh the company said in a press release.

This new Phoenix area center will be located near ASU due to the University’s engineering program and the areas “incredibly well-educated, skilled, and diverse talent pools that are well-positioned to help support Zoom’s ongoing growth and continued success,” Eric S. Yuan, the CEO of Zoom said in a press release.

According to Chris Camacho, the President and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, Zoom had three criteria in choosing a new location: engineering talent, a proximal location for their headquarters and a “great lifestyle opportunity” for their employees. ASU provided that talent and the area’s “tech momentum” helped ensure Zoom came to Phoenix, Camacho said.

“One of the major hooks was Zoom’s understanding of ASU’s engineering talent,” said Lev Gonick, chief information officer at ASU.

The other hook was that ASU was an early customer of Zoom, which enabled the University to develop a good relationship with the company, Gonick said.

“We could help tell the ASU story in a way that wasn’t just a sales channel conversation,” Gonick said. 

Gonick said ASU President Michael Crow and Yuan  worked well together from the beginning.

Since March 16, when ASU transitioned to an entirely digital platform with the help of Zoom, that relationship accelerated, resulting in the recent announcement the company would expand to the greater Phoenix area, Gonick said. 

Gonick said the new center would benefit recent ASU graduates because there would be more engineering jobs and more opportunities for collaboration between Zoom and the University. 

“Zoom’s expansion into the Phoenix market reflects the success of our efforts to grow and support a new economy for Arizona that is based on technology and innovation,” said Crow in a press release. “With 4,500 engineering graduates per year and a nationally competitive faculty that have been honored with the highest awards in their fields, we are making great strides in creating a top-tier, concentrated environment of technology and talent in greater Phoenix to support the workforce and research and development needs of companies like Zoom.”

The new center could potentially be at one of ASU’s Innovation Zones, such as SkySong, both Camacho and Gonick said. 

The company posted 29 job offerings in Phoenix yesterday, and a press release said they will recruit from the area and work remotely until an office space opens, ideally in the fall. 

Five hundred jobs will be created over the coming years between the two new locations; the timing of those jobs will depend on the pipeline of talent they see when they begin to hire, Camacho said.

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Wyatt MyskowProject Manager

Wyatt Myskow is the project manager at The State Press, where he oversees enterprise stories for the publication. He also works at The Arizona Republic, where he covers the cities of Peoria and Surprise.

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