ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A bit of serendipity – in the form of a double rainbow – played a role in Atlanta-based Rural Sourcing Inc.’s decision to expand to Albuquerque and create about 125 mostly software-development jobs over three years.
Selected over 10 other cities in six states, Albuquerque met RSI’s site selection criteria of low cost of living, high quality of life, enthusiastic public and private leadership and talented workers who like where they live, CEO Monty Hamilton told a news conference Monday.
On top of that, after arriving in the Albuquerque area as part of the site selection process on a rainy late afternoon, Hamilton said he saw a rare double rainbow and thought, “That’s a pretty darn good sign.”
A third-party information technology firm, RSI plans to open a development center in about 7,000 square feet of space in January, hopefully with room to grow to 14,000 square feet. Starting annual pay for recent college graduates is in the low $40,000s, Hamilton said.
RSI has not selected a building for its Albuquerque operation. Scott Throckmorton of Argus Investment Realty is representing the company in its office search.
“We’re primarily focused on Downtown,” Throckmorton told the Journal . “We’ve got a half-dozen possibilities.”
RSI bills itself as a cost-effective domestic alternative to offshore software development. The company also provides support and maintenance services, quality assurance and testing.
Albuquerque joins the company’s list of development centers in Augusta, Ga.; Jonesboro, Ark.; and Mobile, Ala. Locating in small cities reflects what Hamilton said was the company’s objective “to create jobs here in the U.S. in places where they otherwise wouldn’t exist.”
One of the incentives for the company was $250,000 for real estate-related expenses from the state’s Local Economic Development Act “closing fund,” Gov. Susana Martinez told the news conference. RSI represents another step toward a more broad-based state economy, she said.
“We’re going to keep fighting for our labs. We’re going to keep fighting for our military bases. We won’t stop that,” she said. “We have to diversify our economy.”
Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry said the city is providing a $125,000 match to the state’s $250,000 closing fund contribution, telling Hamilton in the audience that the match will double to $250,000 if RSI chooses a location in Downtown.
“We’re excited to be a part of a growing Albuquerque technology community, and we hope to be a catalyst for further growth and investment both in jobs and in the digital economy,” Hamilton said in a statement released later by the city. “We believe Rural Sourcing will flourish in this high-tech haven, given the city’s availability of skilled workers and outstanding quality of life. Albuquerque is a strategic city for us in that it enables us to better serve our existing West Coast clients, and expand our client base across the western United States.”
As a workplace, RSI fits the vogue image of a tech firm with beanbag chairs, a foosball table and Red Bull energy drinks in the fridge, according to Hamilton. Employees can show up in shorts and flip-flops, he said.
RSI will begin operation in January. In the coming months, the company will conduct interviews for software development positions, project managers and quality assurance testing and in the fields of analytics, cloud and mobile computing. It will also offer internships. More information is available at www.ruralsourcing.com/albuquerque.