March 27, 2002
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG JOINS MERRILL LYNCH FOR "HOMECOMING" TO LOWER MANHATTAN
8,500 Merrill Lynch employees to return to the area by June 2002
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Governor George E. Pataki today joined Merrill Lynch Chairman/CEO David H. Komansky and President/COO Stan O'Neal to officially mark Merrill Lynch's homecoming to Lower Manhattan. Merrill Lynch was one of the first companies to reoccupy the World Financial Center (WFC) starting October 23, 2001 when workers returned to 4 WFC. Today's ceremony was held at 2 WFC to celebrate the return of 1,200 employees to that building as well as the total 8,500 employees that will have returned to the company's Lower Manhattan facilities by the end of the Spring. New York City Economic Development Corporation President Andrew M. Alper, State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, and Senator Charles E. Schumer also attended the event.
"Merrill Lynch's return to another building in the World Financial Center is another indication that Lower Manhattan is well on the road to recovery," Mayor Bloomberg said. "In October, Merrill Lynch was one of the first companies to come back to the World Financial Center and I applaud its confidence in Lower Manhattan and its devotion to New York City. Lower Manhattan has a bright future and I am thrilled that Merrill Lynch will be a large part of it."
"After September 11th, from the first possible moment, we at Merrill Lynch had one single objective, to get back in business and back into our headquarters," said Chairman Komansky. "We will never forget the heroism that our own employees demonstrated. Today is a triumphant day for Merrill Lynch; we're bullish on New York and bullish on America."
"Merrill Lynch's homecoming is an outstanding testament both to the commitment of this great company and to the resilience of the people of New York City - the financial capital of the world," said Governor Pataki. "Working together, New Yorkers will remain united and continue to help Lower Manhattan recover and rebuild so that all of New York will come back stronger than ever."
"With the return of 8,500 employees, you can now start saying with confidence 'Lower Manhattan is coming back'," said Senator Schumer. "The people at Merrill Lynch who worked so hard to return to Lower Manhattan are not just smart businesspeople or dedicated citizens, they're good New Yorkers -- and that's the highest praise anyone could ever ask for."
"We've always known that our people make all the difference, and that's never been more apparent than over the past six months," said President O'Neal. "It's inspiring to be part of an organization that could relocate thousands so quickly, be ready for the markets' re-opening without losing a beat, and restore itself with such determination. I want to thank all the City and State officials, community organizations and business partners that worked with us, around the clock, to ensure our safe and swift return. We're proud to affirm our faith in New York City."
"Merrill Lynch's return to the World Financial Center is great news for Lower Manhattan and New York City," EDC President Alper. "Merril Lynch's commitment to downtown should be commended, and the City and the State are happy to be working with them to ensure a smooth return to their offices. As one of the world's leading financial management and advisory companies, Merril Lynch belongs in the Financial Capital of the World."
Approximately 5,000 Merrill Lynch employees reoccupied the headquarters in 4 WFC in October 2001, and another 1,200 will return 2 WFC by April 2002. In total, 8,500 employees will be returning to the company's facilities throughout Lower Manhattan by the end of this Spring.
Skyler / Jennifer Falk