Portland-based telecommunications company Integra announced Wednesday that it will move its headquarters and at least 500 employees next year from Portland to the former Hewlett-Packard campus in east Vancouver, providing a boost in jobs and confidence to Clark County.
Integra said it will occupy 85,000 square feet at the former Hewlett-Packard campus at 18110 S.E. 34th St. The company said it will begin building renovation this year with the goal of beginning its operations in Vancouver in June 2014.
Jesse Selnick, the company’s chief financial officer, said the expansive Vancouver site allows the company to bring all employees into a single building, called Building 1, instead of the two buildings it now occupies in Portland’s Lloyd District.
“Our number one objective is that we wanted all area employees to be under one roof,” Selnick told The Columbian. “It affects how we communicate. There’s a cultural benefit for us all to be together.”
The move works for company employees as well, Selnick said. About half of the affected employees already live in Washington, and the company has some early roots in Vancouver from its purchase in 2006 of a company called Electric Lightwave.
The company has 1,763 employees company-wide, including 577 in Oregon and 126 in Vancouver. The employees already working in Vancouver will not relocate to the new building, Selnick said. Some local sales employees will remain in Portland, and the company will maintain Oregon offices in Salem, Eugene, Bend and Lake Oswego. The employees coming to Vancouver work in a wide variety of executive, finance, technical, sales and support positions, Selnick said.
The company provides businesses with advanced networking, communications and technology solutions in 35 metropolitan markets. Its fiber-optic network connects directly to 2,300 enterprise buildings and data centers. The privately held company reported $594 million in revenue in fiscal year 2012.
Integra said it conducted an extensive search that included sites in Southwest and Northeast Portland as well as Vancouver. Possible incentives for the company to move or stay in Portland were discussed, Selnick said, but were not a factor in the company’s decision to move. “This wasn’t an incentive-driven decision,” he said.
The company had moved to Portland from Hillsboro in 2004 after receiving assistance from the Portland Development Commission.
Lisa Nisenfeld, president of the Vancouver-based Columbia River Economic Development Council, said it’s important that Integra is staying in the Portland-Vancouver region. She said the company approached the CREDC about relocating a portion of its workforce to Clark County.