CHARLOTTE – Microsoft is foregoing two economic incentive packages granted by the state of North Carolina because it is not “willing to share” employee data that would validate agreements formed with the state in 2019.

Earlier this month, the company formally requested that two state economic incentive grants that had been approved in 2019 be terminated.  Under the agreements, the company could have received about $20 million in economic incentives.

In a letter sent by the company to the North Carolina Department of Commerce’s Economic Investment Committee, Microsoft cited an unwillingness to share employee data to complete the validation of job creation specified in the previously approved Job Development Investment Grants (JDIG).

“The amount of employee data requested to validate job creation metrics is more than Microsoft is willing to share,” reads the letter, which was obtained by WRAL TechWire following a request to the North Carolina Department of Commerce.

“Therefore, the company requests to terminate JDIG grants #2019-16 in Mecklenburg County and #2019-34 in Wake County,” the letter reads.

A company spokesperson confirmed the request and the company’s rationale to WRAL TechWire.

“We have been working on this within Microsoft, but unfortunately the amount of employee data requested to validate job creation metrics was more than we are willing to share for these incentives,” said the spokesperson.

A spokesperson for the North Carolina Department of Commerce confirmed on Friday that no payments “were ever made to Microsoft” on the two stated JDIG grants.

Microsoft to expand in Charlotte, add 430 jobs

The latest on planned expansions in Mecklenburg and Wake Counties

The company planned a $23 million expansion of its Charlotte-based operations in October 2019, and received a state incentives package that was tied to the creation of 430 jobs that averaged about $98,000.  That approved package could have been worth more than $7.9 million, according to prior reporting from WRAL TechWire.

In December 2019, the company announced it planned to bring more than 500 jobs to Morrisville, with an average wage of $125,000.  The state incentives package could have granted the company more than $12 million, while the company planned to invest $47 million.  Wake County leaders approved an incentives package for the company in early January 2020, as well, requiring at least 250 new jobs based in the county.

Microsoft’s March 2022 letter to the Economic Investment Committee states the company has made $73 million in capital expenditure investments between the two facilities.

The company also notes in its letter that it employs more than 2,500 full-time employees who work in the state .  WRAL TechWire reported in December 2019 that the company employed “nearly 2,000 people in North Carolina with more than 1,400 being located in Charlotte.”

The Microsoft spokesperson told WRAL TechWire that the company does not share headcount at its facilities or by location, but did add that the company continues to hire in North Carolina, including in the Triangle. The company remains “committed to our current and future employees as well as the region overall, which helps us connect to our east coast customers, the surrounding technology ecosystem, and bring new, diverse perspectives from this community into our company culture,” said the spokesperson.