There was very little traffic on Interstate 75 when Tamika Money left the north of Atlanta to set off on the trip southwards. It was 6.30 am. The rush hour had not yet started on the four-lane highway leading to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. After less than 30 minutes, Money pressed down the indicator and took the first exit to the largest airport hub in the world.
She could clearly make out her destination in the distance, just on the horizon: "One Porsche Drive", in short OPD. An address which is a symbol, message and experience all in one. "OPD has almost become a second home to me and is a real home for our Porsche family. Every time I pass through the entrance doors, I feel a certain enthusiasm and pride," said the purchasing assistant who has been working for Porsche Cars North America (PCNA) for the past two years. Then she made her way to the third floor of the futuristic building. Duty calls.
Porsche has invested around 100 million dollars (just under 90 million euros) in its new company headquarters for North America, which includes the customer experience centre, making it the largest foreign investment in the history of the company. OPD was officially opened under the slogan "Dream Experience" at the beginning of May.
About 900 people were present, among them the Porsche Executive Board, Dr. Wolfgang Porsche, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, and Dr. Hans Michel Piëch, Member of the Supervisory Board. "Today we celebrate a significant milestone in the history of our company as we expand the visibility of the Porsche brand in North America and world-wide. The brand new location 'One Porsche Drive' offers fascinating opportunities to experience the history and the cars," said Matthias Müller, Chairman of the Executive Board.
OPD groups the most important Porsche subsidiaries in North America under one roof: PCNA; Porsche Financial Services, Porsche Consulting and MHP Managing and IT Consulting. "This integration will pay off by raising efficiency and will bring substantial synergies such as much enhanced internal communication," said Müller. Detlev von Platen, CEO of Porsche Cars North America, describes OPD as a unique place where visitors can experience the brand hands-on and breathe it in. "It's where our employees rub shoulders with our customers – at a place that is open to everyone. Such a combination of company headquarters and customer experience centre can be found nowhere else in the world."
The City of Atlanta is not only home to Porsche but also to global corporations such as CNN, Delta Airlines and UPS. "We are proud to have Porsche, an iconic, best-in-class company, make their new home here in Atlanta," declared Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. "For us Porsche is an excellent world ambassador and shows how a company can work successfully from Georgia," said Nathan Deal, Governor of Georgia, praising the Porsche commitment.
During the inauguration evening, the company announced another project from which all citizens and tourists in the Atlanta region would profit: Dr. Wolfgang Porsche handed over a cheque for 500,000 dollars on behalf of the sports car manufacturer in support of the "Atlanta BeltLine" initiative. This transport development project intends to create a network of public parks, multi-purpose trails and traffic arteries along a historic rail corridor about 30 kilometres long surrounding the city centre. True to our traditional responsibility to nature and the environment, "it is very important to us to give a little something back to the community that has given us so much," declared Dr. Porsche.
World-wide response by the media to the OPD opening was extremely positive. In the USA major TV networks such as ABC, NBC, CBS, CNBC and Fox as well as journalists from agencies, motoring magazines and newspapers reported. "Porsche Brings Autobahn to Atlanta" cheered Bloomberg, the US media news group, while motoring magazine Autoweek claimed the new customer experience centre was "the only good place to drive" in Atlanta.