J&J brings 500 jobs to Florida with new shared services HQ

New Jersey-based pharma giant Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) already has a presence in Florida, but it's about to get bigger--by 500 jobs.

The company plans to open a new North American shared services headquarters in Tampa, creating the jobs--with average salaries of at least $75,000--over the next three years, the Tampa Bay Times reports. In return, it'll become eligible for state and local incentives of up to $6.37 million once it delivers on the jobs and wages.

The new positions will include roles in finance, HR and information technology, among other corporate services, the paper notes, and it's unclear how many of the jobs will go to relocating employees versus new hires.

The Tampa pick brings to a close a location search that had been going on for more than a year, the Times says. The company already has businesses based in Florida--such as its Vistakon eye care division, which calls Jacksonville home--and the new site "will continue to build on the successes that our businesses have already achieved across the state," Erin Champlin, vice president of Johnson & Johnson Global Services, said in a statement seen by the paper.

J&J won't be the only pharma player with operations in the area once it gets the new center up and running. Fellow New Jersey drugmaker Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY) last year opened its North American Capability Center in Tampa, and that "made a big impression on Johnson & Johnson," Rick Homans, CEO of the Tampa Hillsborough EDC, told the Tampa Bay Business Journal.

"One high-profile success begets another high-profile success, and the success that Bristol-Myers Squibb is having in this market was a story that Johnson & Johnson could easily understand and relate to," he said.

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