Montreal fails to make shortlist of cities vying for Amazon's 2nd headquarters

Montreal has failed to make Amazon Inc.'s short list of 20 candidates for a second North American headquarters.

Toronto only Canadian city to make cut, other 19 cities are in U.S.

Amazon is looking for a new second headquarters. Montreal was among many Canadian cities that threw their hats into the ring, but were not chosen. (Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Montreal has failed to make Amazon Inc.'s short list of 20 candidates for a second North American headquarters.

"It's obviously not the response we were hoping for. We had a strong bid, but the competition was fierce," Julie Brunet, Montréal International, the group in charge of preparing Montreal's candidacy, said Thursday.

Toronto was the only Canadian city to make the cut. 

The e-commerce giant received 238 applications for the opportunity. The other 19 locations it will consider are all in the U.S. and include New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Denver and Nashville.

A number of Canadian cities, including Calgary, Vancouver, Edmonton and Winnipeg, submitted bids. Montreal made an in-person pitch late last year.

In its bid, Montréal International made the case Montreal has the highest concentration of tech sector jobs of any Canadian city.

The group also tried to make the case it would be a better option than Toronto because it's cheaper for young professionals to live here.

Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante said she was disappointed by Amazon's decision but stressed the city was still in good economic shape. 

Plante made the comments alongside Premier Philippe Couillard, following their first meeting since she took over as mayor.  

She said she and the premier share an interest in improving public transit, ensuring affordable housing and growing the economy.

Amazon will choose the location later this year after looking more closely at the finalists.

An Amazon spokesperson said the process taught the company about several new communities across North America that it will consider as locations for future infrastructure investment and job creation.

The company plans to invest more than $5 billion into the forthcoming headquarters and hire 50,000 highly paid employees in the city housing it.

With files from The Canadian Press