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H-E-B boosts investment in digital

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Retailer unveils 81,000 square-foot tech office in Austin

AUSTIN — H-E-B on Monday announced the opening of its Eastside Tech Hub here, an 80,000-square-foot office that will house its growing digital team and also serve as the new headquarters for its Favor on-demand delivery subsidiary.

H-E-B

The Eastside Tech Hub in Austin, Texas

The new facility will accelerate the retailer’s efforts to become a digital industry leader in Texas, H-E-B officials said.

“Having a shared space like this is crucial to both H-E-B Digital and Favor’s rapid growth,” said Jag Bath, H-E-B chief digital officer and Favor CEO. “The Eastside Tech Hub enables us to have a strong tech presence in both Austin and San Antonio, while fostering a better connection between our teams across the two cities.”

H-E-B worked with IA Interior Architects to customize the recently renovated warehouse space, according to the retailer, which said that the two-story, open office concept includes open collaboration areas, individual work spaces and over 50 meeting rooms of varying sizes, equipped with advanced technology and video conferencing capabilities. To foster continued collaboration between its San Antonio and Austin-based tech workers, or Digital Partners, the retailer will provide shuttle rides between the two cities on Wi-Fi enabled buses throughout the work week.

The tech hub also boasts a coffee bar, a lounge area, a large events space and a wellness center featuring a rock-climbing wall, curated fitness classes, bike parking and showers. Located at 2416 East Sixth Street, the office space is walking distance to several restaurants, coffee shops, breweries and the 7th Street H-E-B store, which is undergoing a major renovation. The new workspace is also meant to celebrate the unique identities of both H-E-B and Favor as well as their shared Texas heritage, with meeting rooms named after H-E-B brand products, famous personal assistants from popular culture — a nod to Favor’s Runners — and Texas landmarks and cities. Decorative accents, such as brick and tile sourced by D’Hanis Brick in San Antonio, handmade furniture from Marfa and plants native to the Lone Star State, thoughtfully integrate Texasthroughout the interior design. The space also features the work of several Texas-based makers and artists, including portraits and murals by Will Bryant, multimedia art by R.F. Alvarez and installations by Cody Barber.

H-E-B and Favor marked the opening of the new tech center with $100,000 in charitable gifts to support hundreds of students in Austin and San Antonio via STEM-based summer camps and programs, such as Code2College in Central Texas, the Austin Pre-freshman Engineering Program at Huston-Tillotson University, Video Game Camp at Austin Community College and Youth Code Jam in San Antonio and Austin.

“As a digital retail leader, this dynamic workplace reflects our commitment to better serve our people and communities,” Bath said. “Investing in our schools and children allows us to help build the next generation of technology innovators right here in Texas.”

The Eastside Tech Hub will initially house hundreds of Favor team members and H-E-B Digital Partners, with room to grow as both companies grow. H-E-B Digital and Favor are both actively hiring across all areas of expertise, including product management, product design and software engineering, the companies said.


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