These Giant Companies Picked Up and Left Their Home States


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The Grass Is Always Greener

Over the past few years, a number of U.S. companies have relocated their headquarters out of their home states, especially tech companies. Many have bid farewell to California in favor of Texas, but Florida, Georgia, and other Southern states have benefited from the influx of business. Here are the latest migrations — but did we miss a big one? Let us know in the comments.

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Texas Gov
Norfolk Southern
Norfolk Southern by JJonahJackalope (CC BY)

Norfolk Southern: Norfolk, Virginia, to Atlanta

The railroad giant announced in 2018 that it would move to Atlanta and opened its new headquarters there in November 2021. “When Norfolk & Western merged with Southern Railway in 1982 to form Norfolk Southern, the headquarters was located in Norfolk, Virginia, while the company’s operations and technology leadership was located in Atlanta,” the company said in a statement. “Our new building brings us together in a central location,” said Annie Adams, vice president and chief transformation officer.

Related: Jobs That Have Disappeared From American Life

Icahn Enterprises
Neilson Barnard/Getty
Pabst Brewing
Scott Olson/Getty

Pabst Brewing: Los Angeles to San Antonio

The beer maker – founded in Milwaukee in 1844 – has moved around over the years after closing its original brewery in 1996 in favor of San Antonio. It went to Chicago in 2006 and to Los Angeles in 2011, according to Inside Beer, before returning to San Antonio in 2020. For the record, no beer is made there; it's brewed in Milwaukee under an agreement with MillerCoors.

Related: Company Town Horror Stories

CBRE Group
CBRE Group by Raysonho @ Open Grid Scheduler / Scalable Grid Engine (CC BY)

CBRE Group: Los Angeles to Dallas

For some time, the country’s largest commercial real estate services company had considered Dallas “its de facto headquarters,” according to the Los Angeles Times. It formalized that idea in October 2020.

Charles Schwab office building in SOMA district
Sundry Photography/istockphoto

Charles Schwab: San Francisco to Westlake, Texas

On the heels of its acquisition of TD Ameritrade in 2020, the financial services company said in October of that year that it was moving its headquarters to the Dallas-Fort Worth area, where about 4,500 employees from the combined companies were already located, according to the Dallas Business Journal.

Papa John's
J. Michael Jones / istockphoto

Papa John’s: Louisville, Kentucky, to Atlanta

While company officials said they still loved the pizza maker’s hometown, they told the Louisville Courier Journal in September 2020 that a decision to move the company’s global headquarters to Atlanta was because of the city’s reputation as “a mecca for fast-food chains and restaurant innovation.” There was also a need for a bigger airport and larger talent pool — and Atlanta was its biggest corporate-owned market.


Hewlett-Packard Enterprise: San Jose, California, to Houston

One of the early tenants of Silicon Valley, the tech giant decided in late 2020 to move its global headquarters to Houston where it already had 2,600 employees, according to The Associated Press. After two years of construction, the company opened a 440,000-square-foot campus in suburban Spring, Texas, this May.

Oracle World Headquarters

Oracle: Redwood City, California, to Austin, Texas

The business software and service company opened a large corporate campus in Austin in 2018 and announced in December 2020 that it would become the company’s new headquarters, says. “Depending on their role, this means that many of our employees can choose their office location as well as continue to work from home part time or full time,” the company said.

Digital Realty:
Wikimedia Commons

Digital Realty: San Francisco to Austin, Texas

The data center firm announced its intent to leave California in January 2021. “The relocation of the corporate headquarters to Austin reflects the company’s established track record of success and growth in Texas, along with its extensive investment in the state in terms of capital as well as talent,” the company said in a press release. Erich Sanchack, Digital Realty's executive vice president of operations, told the Austin American-Statesman that Texas offers “a thriving business environment, a reasonable cost of living, and a highly skilled talent base.”


CrowdStreet: Portland, Oregon, to Austin, Texas

The online real estate investing marketplace announced in March 2021 that it would move to Austin, where it was opening a second office, “strategically positioning the company to better serve its customer base.” The move was part of a new hybrid work model, “allowing employees to work where it works best for them,” the company said in a press release.

ServiceMaster Brands
Wikimedia Commons

ServiceMaster Brands: Memphis, Tennessee, to Atlanta

The former division of Terminix Global Holdings moved its headquarters to Atlanta from Memphis in 2021 after being bought by Atlanta investor Roark CapitalManagement for $1.6 billion, according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

BlockTower Capital:
BlockTower Capital
Aecom office building in Markham, On, Canada.

Aecom: Los Angeles to Dallas

One of the top infrastructure companies announced in August 2021 that some of its leadership tier would join 1,200 existing Dallas employees, shifting headquarters operations from Los Angeles. “The North Texas region today provides Aecom additional benefits as a corporate hub and talent magnet for the engineering and consulting industry,” the Fortune 500 company said in a press release.

Remington Firearms:
Wikimedia Commons

Remington Firearms: Ilion, New York, to LaGrange, Georgia

The nation’s oldest gun maker – or what was left of it when the company was broken up after two bankruptcies – said in November that it would move its global headquarters south, committing to spend $100 million on a manufacturing facility and research center in Troup County, southwest of Atlanta, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Tesla by Steve Jurvetson (CC BY)

Tesla: Palo Alto, California, to Austin, Texas

The electric-vehicle maker officially shifted its corporate headquarters address to Austin, Texas – the site of its new “Gigafactory” – in a December regulatory filing, according to Business Insider. CEO Elon Musk “stands to save an estimated $2.5 billion in capital gains taxes by moving his residence and business from California to Texas,” the publication says.

Win McNamee/Getty

Boeing: Chicago to Arlington, Virginia

While most people think of Boeing as being based in Seattle — home of its gigantic manufacturing facilities — its headquarters had been in Chicago since 2001. But the world’s third-largest defense contractor announced in May that it would move to suburban Washington, D.C., where its defense unit had relocated in 2017. “The region makes strategic sense for our global headquarters, given its proximity to our customers and stakeholders and its access to world-class engineering and technical talents,” CEO Dave Calhoun said in a statement.

Wikimedia Commons

Citadel: Chicago to Miami

After more than 30 years in Chicago, billionaire Ken Griffin announced in June that he was moving his hedge fund and its trading firm Citadel Securities to Miami, citing taxes and Chicago’s crime rate, according to The New York Times. Bloomberg says the decision was likely cemented when a $363 million real estate deal closed in April for a 2.5-acre site that could become the company’s future home. Florida native Griffin had also recently moved to Miami.

Justin Sullivan/Getty

Caterpillar: Deerfield, Illinois, to Irving, Texas

Originally based in Peoria, Illinois, the heavy-equipment company announced in June that it was leaving its home state after nearly 100 years. Bloomberg News says the company “believes the move will help it attract new talent and improve global access to its employees, customers, and dealer network due to two major airports in the region.”

Kellogg's Snack Division. Kellogg Snack brands include Keebler, Pop-Tarts, Eggo, and Kashi.

Kellogg: Battle Creek, Michigan, to Chicago

Following a spin-off of cereal and plant-based foods businesses, this company’s largest and most profitable division – snacks – will move to Chicago from its historic home in Michigan. That’s a morale booster for the region following the loss of Boeing and Caterpillar, says the Chicago Sun-Times. The spin-off is expected to be completed in 2023.