Aetna is moving its corporate headquarters to Manhattan from Hartford, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Thursday. The health insurance company will move from Connecticut's capital to its new headquarters at 61 9th Avenue by the end of 2018.

“New York City is where talent and technology come together,” de Blasio said. “We’ve never been stronger, and that’s why companies like Aetna and their employees want to be here. We’re proud to support Aetna’s investment in the city.”

The mayor’s office estimates the move will create about 250 good-paying jobs resulting in about $146 million in economic benefits to the city.

The healthcare and life sciences sectors have been a major part of de Blasio’s New York Works plan, a series of initiatives aimed at creating over 100,000 good paying jobs over the next 10 years. This move by Aetna builds on efforts by de Blasio to create what he called a 21st century healthcare system for New Yorkers.

Aetna will be moving its corporate headquarters to 61 9th Ave. in Manhattan.
Aetna will be moving its corporate headquarters to 61 9th Ave. in Manhattan. New York City Mayor's Office

“New York City is a knowledge economy hub, and a driver of the innovations that will play a significant part in our ongoing transformation,” said Aetna Chairman and CEO Mark Bertolini. “Many of the roles in our new office will be filled by innovators from the area’s deep talent pool, which will be an invaluable resource as we consider additional investments in the city.”

Aetna will get a $9.6 million financial assistance package from the New York City Economic Development Corp. This package includes:

  • $4.25 million in sales tax benefits to offset sales tax liabilities resulting from Aetna’s capital investment;
  • New York City Industrial Development Agency property tax benefits valued at $3.8 million over 10 years to reduce the property tax liability resulting from capital expenditures; and
  • Enhanced sales tax benefits and Business Incentive Rate discount valued at $1.5 million over 10 years.

Additionally, Aetna will also get economic support from Empire State Development.

Aetna already has offices around the city, including operations in Harlem. As part of the commitment to support the new headquarters, the city and company have agreed to work together to develop partnerships that support public health, healthy living, advance digital health innovation and increase access to quality jobs for residents.

“Attracting a major player in the health care industry like Aetna is a big win for New York City, helping to drive even more innovation and job creation throughout the sector,” said NYC Economic Development Corp. President James Patchett.

Hartford officials urged state leaders to take action to fix Connecticut's fiscal problems.

“I hope that, as a state, we can use the loss of Aetna’s flag as a rallying cry to put Connecticut on a sound fiscal path and position our cities -- including Hartford -- to be the strong, vibrant centers of growth that Connecticut needs and that our major employers demand,” said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.

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Chip Barnett

Chip Barnett

Chip Barnett is a journalist with more than 40 years of experience. Barnett is currently Senior Market Reporter for The Bond Buyer.