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PowerSchool to expand in Roanoke

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Editor's note: This story has been updated.

Education technology company PowerSchool is planning to move its Roanoke operations and add 96 jobs.

The company will spend $1.8 million to relocate to 110 Franklin Ave., where it will occupy two floors, or about 40,000 square feet in the former Norfolk Southern Building.  A group of local investors purchased the bulding after Norfolk Southern moved operations to Norfolk and Atlanta in 2015.

Virginia competed against California, Pennsylvania and Texas for the project. PowerSchool currently has 85 employees.

Headquartered in Folsom, Calif., PowerSchool is an education technology platform for K-12. It established its Roanoke presence in 2016 with the acquisition of  local start-up Interactive Achievement. Roanoke competed against California, Pennsylvania and Texas for the project.

“We are excited about staying and expanding our presence in Roanoke,” Mark Oldemeyer, PowerSchool’s chief financial officer, said in a statement.  “PowerSchool’s mission is to improve the K-12 education experience with innovative software that helps drive student success. The Roanoke team is passionate about the work we do …”

Damon Williams, chairman of the Roanoke Economic Development Authority, said,  “Keeping PowerSchool in Roanoke and growing is important for our region and for Virginia. It’s a great win for everyone.”

Beth Doughty, executive director of the Roanoke Regional Partnership, said the expansion would result in “exceptional new economy jobs. The company’s confidence in our region is further proof that we are competitive for technology jobs, talent, and investment.”

PowerSchool serves more than 32 million students, 66 million parents, and 100 million users in over 70 countries around the world.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe approved a $250,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund for the project. The company also will receive funding and services form the Virginia Jobs Investment Program. The company is a 2016 graduate of VEDP’s award-winning Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET) Program.

Construction on its new space will begin immediately. The company expects to be in its new offices in 2018. Barry L. Ward of Cushman & Wakefield/Thalhimer handled lease negotiations for PowerSchool and is the exclusive representative for the One Ten Franklin building located at 110 Franklin Rd. SE.

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