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Friday, March 09, 2012, 08:03 am PT (11:03 am ET)

Apple to spend $304M on new Austin, Tex., campus, creating 3600 new jobs

Apple plans to invest $304 million on a new campus in Austin that will create 3,600 new jobs and double the size of its workforce in Texas.

Apple's plans were revealed on Friday by the office of Gov. Rick Perry, which revealed the state will award Apple $21 million over 10 years through the Texas Enterprise Fund. In return, Apple will expand its customer support, sales and accounting functions in the region.

"Apple is known for its bold innovation and game-changing designs, and the expansion of their Austin facility adds to the growing list of visionary high-tech companies that have found that Texas' economic climate is a perfect fit for their future, thanks to our low taxes, reasonable and predictable regulations, fair legal system and skilled workforce" Perry said. "Investments like this further Texas' potential to become the nation's next high-tech hub."

The Texas Enterprise Fund offers companies incentives to invest in Texas. The new partnership with Apple will be one of the largest job creation initiatives in TEF history, and one of the largest capital investments by a TEF recipient.

The deal hinges on finalized contracts, as well as a local incentive agreement that must be approved by the city of Austin, and Travis County.

The TEF was created by the Texas Legislature in 2003, and funding was re-appropriated for the program in 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2011. TEF projects must be approved by the state's governor, lieutenant governor and speaker of the house.

The governor's office said TEF has become one of the state's most competitive tools to recruit and bolster business. To date, the fund has invested more than $443.4 million to help generate more than 62,000 new jobs and $15.4 billion in capital investment.

The announcement comes as Apple is gearing up to open a new retail store next week in Houston at the Highland Village Shopping Center. The store will open next Friday, March 16, the same day the third-generation iPad will go on sale.