Odds improve for Philadelphia to win Amazon HQ2, but still trails some heavy hitters

Amazon maintains warehouse-distribution centers in the Lehigh Valley, which is less than an hour away from Kulpsville on the Northeast Extension.(MONTCO.today file photo)

Philadelphia’s odds of landing Amazon’s second headquarters improved in the last two-and-a-half months, but it still looks like a long shot, according to Irish betting site PaddyPower.

In late October, PaddyPower said Philadelphia had a 20-to-1 chance of securing Amazon’s HQ2, not a particular strong contender when compared with Atlanta and Austin, Texas. The capital of Georgia, already home to Coca Cola and The Home Depot, and the Texas capital, a tech hub in the South, were listed at 2-to-1 and 3-to-1 odds, respectively, in late October. Now, the two cities each share a 3-in-1 chance of landing HQ2, writes David Allison and Alison Burdo in The Philadelphia Business Journal.

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Philadelphia still trails the two frontrunners. As of Dec. 31, PaddyPower says the city has a 16-to-1 chance of scoring HQ2.

That probability makes Philadelphia as likely a pick as Chicago, Rochester, New York, and Toronto – they are all listed at 16-to-1. Other analyses have given Philadelphia a better shot, like Inc. Magazine’s, though the Wall Street Journal left the city off of its list.

The odds for Pittsburgh, which PaddyPower put ahead of its Pennsylvania rival in October, remain the same as of Dec. 31 at 14-to-1. Along with the Steel City, New York, Washington, D.C., and Portland, Oregon are listed at 14-to-1.

At a 7-in-1 chance, Boston also has a higher probability of nabbing the $5 billion investment from the Seattle-based e-commerce giant. Check out PaddyPower’s odds list here.

A Jan. 2 story from Fortune notes that, “When cities submitted their bids in late October, Fortune turned to a popular betting site to see which of the more than 200 candidates had the early edge. Fast forward to the new year, and the initial favorite—Atlanta—is still at the top of the list, but its chances have declined from 2/1 to 3/1 and it now shares the perch with southern rival, Austin, Tex.”

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