Rapid Growth and Commitment
Belgian-based software firm, Odoo Inc., is set to undergo a massive expansion in Buffalo, with intentions of nearly tripling its existing staff. The expansion is expected to introduce 350 new jobs in the next half-decade. Having a presence in Buffalo for a while now, the company’s workforce stands at 175. As part of its dedicated effort to grow in Buffalo, Odoo has procured seven floors in the Fountain Plaza building, a symbolic purchase from the state at just $1.
Fountain Plaza’s Past and New Hope
Previously, the state had obtained this space aiming to establish an IBM technology hub through its Buffalo Billion initiative. This program was expected to usher in high-value software development and other tech roles. Unfortunately, IBM’s envisioned hub transformed into a technical assistance call center, a far cry from the specialized roles initially hoped for. Nevertheless, with Odoo’s decision to expand, the state sees a fresh opportunity to revitalize the Buffalo Niagara region’s tech industry.
Relocation and Expansion Details
Nick Kosinski, Odoo’s Managing Director of US East, revealed that Odoo will be moving from Seneca One to the Fountain Plaza, taking up a vast 103,099 square feet of space, all by October 2. This acquisition is particularly significant as it marks Odoo’s maiden real estate purchase in North America, a statement of their commitment to the Buffalo community. In line with this, the company plans to occupy floors three, and seven through 12, while leasing out one floor to IBM.
Kosinski pointed out that the acquired space is fully equipped to accommodate their expansion seamlessly. Furnished with over 600 desks and chairs, it features amenities such as conference rooms, refinished restrooms, soundproofing, and a robust networking infrastructure, offering a “plug and play” environment.
Odoo’s Rising Stature and Job Creation Goals
Notably, Odoo’s private investors have recently valued the firm at a staggering $3 billion. This comes two years after achieving “unicorn” status, with valuations surpassing the $1 billion mark. Their consistent growth underscores their position as a premier provider of integrated business solutions for SMBs. As part of the agreement with the state, Odoo is bound to generate 70 jobs annually for five years, totaling 350 jobs. If the target isn’t achieved, penalties apply, amounting to $23,000 per uncreated job. However, Odoo can counteract earlier job shortfalls by maintaining all 525 positions for an additional two years.
Odoo’s Evolution and Thanks to Local Partnerships
Odoo began its journey in Buffalo with just a single employee in 2020. The rapid growth witnessed the addition of a second floor for a diverse team at Seneca One Tower just two years later. Alongside this, they have also pioneered an engineering internship program, focusing on nurturing the next tech-savvy generation. Extending gratitude, Kosinski praised Seneca One and its developer, Douglas Jemal, for their unwavering support.
Odoo’s Vision for Buffalo’s Urban Center
With unwavering enthusiasm, Kosinski envisions Odoo as a catalyst, bringing renewed energy to Buffalo’s heart at Fountain Plaza. He passionately speaks about the potential influence and buzz Odoo aims to infuse in the city, a sentiment reflective of their dedication to Buffalo’s growth and development.