WRAL Tech Wire

April 28, 2021

By Jason Parker

WRAL TechWire conducted an interview, by email, with Dr. Henry McKoy is the Director of Entrepreneurship and a member of the faculty in the North Carolina Central University School of Business, and a self-described academic economist with a specialty in economic development.  McKoy is also a former official with the North Carolina Department of Commerce, serving as the Assistant Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Commerce for Governor Beverly Perdue. The interview has been lightly edited for clarity.

  • What do the recent announcements from Apple and Google mean for the Triangle?

The decision of both Apple and Google to locate major hubs and headquarters in the Triangle and North Carolina are huge wins for the region and the state.  A huge part of this is psychological.  The Triangle has been chasing Silicon Valley, Austin, and Boston for decades, and these recent announcements are a clear indicator to people in the community and those watching from the outside that we are a national and global contender.  These companies can locate anywhere, and the decision to locate in our region and state continues to elevate our status as a creative class and innovation hub.

Both Google and Apple will be considered transformative for the Triangle based on their decisions to locate here.  Both of those firms come with incredible excitement, and there is real intrinsic value to that.  At least at this moment, and for some time being, the Triangle will be considered “the place to be.”  The region already had strong appeal, but this is akin to an external stamp of approval.  It will certainly be transformative in a physical standpoint also.   As Google decides where it wants to locate operationally and Apple builds its RTP campus, there will be many secondary jobs that come from that.  The economy will expand.