Supermarket sweep

San Antonio-based H-E-B rings up giant tech facility with hundreds of new jobs

San Antonio's H-E-B rings up giant tech facility with hundreds of jobs

H-E-B tech facility Austin
H-E-B's new tech hub will transform an East Austin warehouse. Rendering courtesy of H-E-B

It’s no secret that H-E-B and its upscale counterpart Central Market are among Texas’ favorite places to shop. Now the San Antonio-based company is moving further into the digital realm with a new tech hub designed to foster innovation. 

On September 5, the grocery giant announced plans for a new tech center at 2416 E. Sixth St. in Austin. The new hub will be a headquarters for H-E-B’s digital team as well as Favor, the popular delivery service acquired by the grocery chain in February.

The building, a former industrial warehouse, will be completely renovated by IA Interior Architects to create an open, collaborative workspace. 

“This state-of-the-art space will be a hub for creativity and innovation as we continue to develop the ultimate digital experience for our customers,” said H-E-B chief digital officer Jag Bath in a release. “Bringing H-E-B and Favor closer together will allow us to promote collaboration between our two companies as we strengthen our commitment to building out H-E-B’s omnichannel services.”

The new facility doesn’t just mean fancy new digs for the existing team. H-E-B says it plans to fill the 81,000-square-foot facility with several hundred new employees in both the grocery division and Favor.

The move to East Austin is part of H-E-B's effort to compete in a digital space dominated by behemoths like Amazon and Walmart. In addition to adding Favor to the family, the grocery chain has made a big investment in the H-E-B Curbside service, which debuted in November 2017. Currently available in 145 Texas locations, it is on track to expand to 165 stores by the end of the year.