by: Mark Becker Updated:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Hundreds of six-figure-salary jobs are coming to Charlotte from one of the nation's leading insurance companies.
Charlotte beat out several cities in a nationwide search for AIG's newest technology center.
The jobs will be designing and testing software to support AIG's insurance business, which already has an office in Southpark.
The Charlotte Chamber of Commerce said AIG chose Charlotte after a nationwide search, lured in part by a job development grant that promises tax breaks if AIG delivers the 230 jobs it is promising.
The jobs have average salaries of more than $100,000.
"In an environment where average jobs are hard to come by, six-figure jobs are really important," said UNC-Charlotte professor John Connaughton.
Connaughton said AIG's move will not only boost a local economy built on banking, but will help balance it as well.
"What this does is help us diversify and prepare for the next recession, which we know is going to come," he said.
The jobs won't be showing up right away. AIG said it plans to phase them in over the next four years.
But a man who tracks local jobs in Charlotte's Employers Association said that's worth waiting for.
"That's huge -- again, most companies with 100 to 200 employees, their average salary is not $100,000 a year," said Kenny Colbert.
Colbert said that an unemployment rate still north of 7 percent may have been one more reason AIG chose Charlotte.
"So it makes sense to come here because there are probably some qualified people looking for jobs in that field," Colbert said.
AIG has not said where it will put the technology center or how many of those jobs will be filled locally, but it's certainly an early Christmas present for the city and the state.
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