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THE INC. LIFE

Amazon’s New Headquarters. A New City Emerges As the Favorite

This definitely isn’t the first place that comes to mind.

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BY Chris Matyszczyk - 11 Feb 2018

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.

 

Amazon leaked it, right?

In its recent Super Bowl ad, someone asks for the weather in Austin.

That was a clue, surely.

Or was it?

Regular sufferers of this column will know that I've been religiously following the betting on which city will, indeed, house Amazon's second headquarters, often known as HQ2.

The odds fluttered between Atlanta, Austin and Boston as favorites.

But these were merely the odds offered by Irish bookmaker Paddy Power.

Today, I came closer to home -- Amazon's current home, that is -- to see what oddsmakers have to say.

I drifted to recent odds offered by online site Bovada, a Canada-based online betting operation.

It had installed Nashville as its favorite. Yes, the one in Tennessee.

Few have mentioned it as being near the top of Amazon's consideration list. But it made it to the finals and clearly some bettors believe the darkness of its horse will shade the other runners.

Bovada has Washington D.C as its second favorite, with Atlanta, Austin and Dallas close behind.

Boston -- one of Paddy Power's favorites -- is near the bottom, along with Columbus, Ohio and Miami, Florida.

One should, quite naturally, be skeptical of such odds.

It's entirely unclear whether the money that's being laid is informed cash or merely speculative bill-tossing.

Nashville, though, does have at least some of the slightly alternative tendencies that are so familiar in Amazon's current home of Seattle.

Just as Seattle has an extremely popular Major League Soccer team, so Nashville has just secured an expansion MLS franchise.

But we make such comparisons at our peril.

No one really knows what might be inside the head of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

It's easy to imagine he's already made his mind up, despite the company only saying it will announce its decision some time this year.

Should passionate Amazon-lovers in the other competing cities be downcast at the idea that the company might put its HQ2 in Nashville, I have a small remedy.

Yes, another bookmaker.

This time, Las Vegas Sports Betting. (After all, Amazon has set this up with a sort of playoff format, hasn't it?)

At LVSB, the favorite is Atlanta. It's followed by Austin, Boston and Washington D.C.

Oh, but whom do I see lurking just behind these favorites?

Why, Nashville, Tennessee.

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