USAA to open 6-floor office in new South End building employing about 750

CHARLOTTE — USAA will open a new office in Charlotte later this year, the company announced Thursday.

It will lease six floors in a new 10-story office building at West Boulevard and Hawkins Street.

The Square at South End is a 153,000-square-foot office building at the old Sauceman’s restaurant site.

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“Employers looking for a highly skilled work force and high quality of life keep coming to North Carolina,” said Gov. Roy Cooper in a news release. “We pride ourselves on being the most military and veteran friendly state in the nation and I’m proud that USAA, which has provided for military families since 1922, has decided to expand its presence in Charlotte.”

There will be about 750 employed at the South End location. They will work either onsite or in a hybrid model.

USAA is actively hiring. Search www.usaajobs.com for available positions.

“Just two days after Credit Karma announcing their east coast headquarters in Charlotte, and two months after Robinhood announcing their major expansion into the Queen City, Fortune 100 heavyweight USAA is showing the world this is more than a coincidence by announcing an expansion of their own,” said Charlotte City Councilman Tariq Bokhari, founder of the Carolina FinTech Hub. “Our city of Charlotte is a dominant national force in fintech, and our state of North Carolina has an unrivaled passion for our military baked into the strands of our DNA. Having USAA become a part of our community won’t just be measured in jobs and capital, it will be measured in lives changed for the better.”

USAA is a FinTech company, which includes companies in the financial and tech space.

Ashley Fahey is the real estate editor for the Charlotte Business Journal and said that coming out of the pandemic, companies discovered people can really work anywhere

“Being in Silicon Valley used to be such a priority for this country,” Fahey said.

Charlotte’s banking and finance headquarters makes it a natural fit for FinTech companies.

“A lot of these west coast companies are looking for more affordable real estate,” Fahey said.

Companies are investing in Charlotte’s currency, but it also puts pressure on other companies to compete for talent. There are about 120 people moving to Charlotte every day and with the growth of FinTech, that number will likely go up.

“I really anticipate even more of a labor war between the banks, the tech companies, the start-ups,” Fahey said.

There can also be a downside to too much tech jobs and it has played out in Austin, Texas.

Those jobs pay so well, it could change the Queen City’s affordability.

“As we’ve seen in places like Austin, Texas, which has become such a big hot spot for tech, the housing prices and the affordability crunch is only accelerated there,” Fahey said.

Charlotte is already facing and affordable housing crisis.

Channel 9 asked Bokhari if the FinTech book could make it worse.

“We have to think creatively to solve these problems but having those folks as our neighbors is a big part of the solution,” he said.

Tech companies are expanding in other places in the state, including Raleigh making North Carolina a player in tech jobs.

“I talk to a lot of economic developers, and I could see them trying to brand the whole state as one big tech hub and say, ‘Come on in. We are open for business,’” Fahey said.