Loudoun County has again flexed its business-magnet muscle, besting Maryland and New York in securing a $16 million expansion by a worldwide media company that is expected to create 240 new jobs here.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced June 15 that Discovery Inc., whose portfolio of entertainment media includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, Food Network, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Travel Channel, Turbo/Velocity, Animal Planet, Science Channel, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Discovery Kids in Latin America and Eurosport, intends to invest $16 million to expand its global technology and operations hub in Loudoun County.
In the announcement, Northam said the deal includes a $500,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund and funding services to support the company’s employee training activities through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program. The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors will vote on a $500,000 match of the state’s funding at a future business meeting.
“This is exactly the kind of business diversification that we need and welcome,” Loudoun County Board of Supervisors Chair Phyllis Randall said. “I am proud that one of the world’s leading media companies will make this investment in jobs and infrastructure in our county.”
Discovery is a platform innovator that delivers more than 8,000 hours of original programming each year, and has category leadership across every content genre around the world. Its programming is available in 220 countries and territories and 50 languages.
Discovery announced in January that it would move its headquarters from Silver Spring, Maryland, to New York City. As part of the announcement Thursday, the company said it also would transform its media distribution facility, located along Shaw Road in Sterling, into Discovery’s Northern Virginia Technology Hub.
“Discovery, Inc.’s decision to expand its footprint in Loudoun County is an exciting win for Virginia, and we are honored that a global company of this caliber has decided to grow and reinvest in the commonwealth,” Northam said.
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Loudoun County to secure the project for Virginia.
“With our talented workforce and a globally recognized internet hub, Loudoun is the perfect location for Discovery to build on their industry-leading efforts to move all of Discovery U.S. networks origination to the cloud,” Loudoun Economic Development Executive Director Buddy Rizer said.