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Red Hat expects to hire 1000 workers this year

Red Hat expects to continue adding workers at a rapid-fire pace this year.

Jim Whitehurst, CEO of the Raleigh-based Linux software company, told Investor’s Business Daily in a recent interview that the company plans to add at least 1,000 workers in 2012 — which would boost its worldwide employment by more than 20 percent. Last month the company reported that it had 4,350 workers, including more than 700 in Raleigh.

In its fiscal third quarter that ended Nov. 30, Red Hat added 250 workers globally, the most it’s ever added in a three-month period. Adding at least 1,000 workers this year would average 250 workers per quarter.

Booming business is fueling the appetite for additional workers. Red Hat’s $290 million in revenue in the latest quarter was 23 percent higher than a year ago.

Red Hat currently is based at N.C. State University’s Centennial Campus, but it plans to move to a downtown office tower being vacated by Progress Energy as a result of the utility’s planned merger with Duke Energy.

Red Hat is eligible to receive more than $15 million in state incentives if it creates 540 new high-paying jobs over the next nine years. Last month Wake County commissioners approved an extra $675,000 in incentives for the company.

Whitehurst also said that he doesn’t expect companies to curtail their investment in information technology this year even though businesses often slow their spending in a presidential election year.

“We are finally starting to see significant productivity gains with information technology,” Whitehurst said. “I think most companies are investing in IT to continue their double-digit earnings growth.”

You can read Whitehurst’s interview here.

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