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January 19, 2018

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Grand Theft Auto’ video game developer eyes move to downtown Las Vegas

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Cases of the video game Grand Theft Auto IV are displayed at a Best Buy store in West Hollywood, Calif., April 29, 2008.

302 E. Carson

Take-Two Interactive, the software company behind one of the biggest series in video-gaming, “Grand Theft Auto,” wants to move some of its operations into downtown Las Vegas.

The company is looking to lease 24,700 square feet of space at 302 E. Carson Ave., in the same building where Zappos recently took over two floors and moved in 200 employees.

The city said Take-Two Interactive's “Project ICON” would be moved into the space if the lease agreement is finalized.

The city’s Redevelopment Agency and City Council will discuss early Wednesday granting the company up to $600,000 for “furnishings, fixtures, equipment and offsite related parking expenses” in incentives for the move.

In return, the city says Take-Two Interactive will create about 150 new jobs. An estimated 70 or more jobs also would be created indirectly, the city estimates.

Councilman Bob Coffin, whose ward includes the area, called it “great news for Las Vegas because they are going to bring people down here who are part of a growing pool of people skilled in electronics and a new generation of technology.”

He called the city’s financial incentives “small when compared to the yield.”

“We don’t have to give away the store to get them to come here,” he said. “We’re getting them to come here because it’s a good place to have a business instead of having to buy their presence.”

City officials saw the move of Zappos’ headquarters from Henderson into City Hall, which will be finalized late next year, as a potential catalyst for other technology companies to move into downtown Las Vegas. One worry has been whether there would be enough technological brainpower to support software and other companies considering the move to Las Vegas.

“We now have companies who know there are people here they can hire to work for them,” Coffin said. “That’s a huge change.”

The Vegas Tech Fund, whose partners include Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, also is investing in at least 10 tech companies already with connections to downtown Las Vegas.

Zappos moved 200 of its employees into 302 E. Carson over the summer, the first of hundreds of employees who will be moved into the area by the end of next year.

Take-Two Interactive is one of the top 10 software gaming companies in the world, with titles such as “BioShock,” “Max Payne” and “Red Dead Redemption” to its credit. The company also is applying for training and Catalyst grants from the state. Catalyst is a $10 million fund created by the 2011 Nevada Legislature that aids with business relocation and expansion.

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