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Facebook announced Friday it will establish engineering operations in New York City in 2012. This will be the social networking company’s first engineering office outside of the west coast. “We want the next Facebook to start here in New York City,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

Michael Bloomberg, Sheryl Sandberg, and Charles Schumer at Facebook NYC

Michael Bloomberg, Sheryl Sandberg, and Charles Schumer at Facebook NYC

Facebook announced Friday it will establish engineering operations in New York City in early 2012. This will be the social networking company’s first major engineering office outside of the west coast. It has its headquarters in Silicon Valley and a small office in Seattle.

Facebook already has 100 employees in New York City, but they all deal in non-engineering fields such as advertising, PR and marketing. The company has begun accepting applications for New York City-based engineers, and it has no concrete targets for how large the NYC engineering team will be: “We will hire as much talent as we can find,” Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said during a press event Friday morning.

The company stressed that its New York City tech operations will be a significant concern for Facebook’s overall strategy. “For us this isn’t a satellite office, this will be a core part of our engineering stack,” Facebook VP of engineering Mike Schroepfer said during his remarks at the event.

It’s a big deal for New York City, which is keen to further establish itself as a formidable technology industry hub. “We want the next Facebook to start here in New York City,” New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said at the press event.

Charles Schumer, the senior Senator from New York State, was also present at the Facebook announcement. “This is a red-letter day for New York,” Schumer said. “The fact that a company like Facebook is locating engineers here says that we have turned the corner… this is a transformative event.”

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