Amazon is set to create 5,000 new jobs in the UK. The online retailer has announced that it is to open a new technology hub in Cambridge to work on innovations such as Alexa, delivery drones and its Echo smart speaker. In total 400 mathematical experts, scientists and engineers will be based at the 60,000 square foot centre adjacent to Cambridge train station.
The majority of the other 4,600 new jobs are expected to be in Amazon’s new UK warehouses. A spokesman for the company, confirmed that Amazon’s existing development centre in Cambridge – which houses 150 experts – will switch its focus to solely concentrating on Amazon’s drone delivery service, Prime Air.
“We are constantly inventing on behalf of our customers, and our development centres in Cambridge, Edinburgh and London play a major role in Amazon’s global innovation story,” said Doug Gurr, UK country manager for Amazon. “By the end of this year, we will have more than 1,500 innovation-related roles here in Britain, working on everything from machine learning and drone technology to streaming video technology and Amazon Web Services.”
The research hub will be used to advance the company’s digital assistant Alexa. Rumours suggest that Amazon is working on a smart camera – dubbed the Echo Look – that uses Alexa to give fashion advice to its users. The firm is also said to be working towards opening a checkout-free supermarket, after registering a UK trademark for its Amazon Go format.
The new jobs would see Amazon’s workforce grow from 19,000 to 24,000 in the UK. The plan is to have 15 delivery warehouses across the UK by the end of the year. Having recently opened a new site in Daventry, centres in Doncaster, Warrington and Tilbury are expected to begin operation before the end of 2017.