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Intel to Invest $7 Billion in U.S. Facilities

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 14 comments

Intel stated that it plans to invest $7 billion USD in U.S. manufacturing facilities as part of its 2-year plan to focus on leading-edge technologies.

The news of Intel's big spending spree comes directly from the mouth of Intel president and CEO, Paul Otellini. He states that the huge investment will fund the deployment of Intel's 32 nm manufacturing technology used to build faster, smaller chips that consumer less energy. And after the gloom and doom of recent weeks involving closures and layoffs, the company's new investment - its largest for a new manufacturing process so far - sounds like a breath of fresh air.

"We're investing in America to keep Intel and our nation at the forefront of innovation," Otellini said. "These manufacturing facilities will produce the most advanced computing technology in the world. The capabilities of our 32nm factories are truly extraordinary, and the chips they produce will become the basic building blocks of the digital world, generating economic returns far beyond our industry."

The spending begins with existing manufacturing sites located in Oregon, Arizona, and New Mexico. Reinvesting funds back into these facilities means high-wage, high skill jobs for 7,000 employees, adding to the 45,000 Intel workforce residing in the U.S. Currently more than 75 percent of Intel's sales are overseas, however 75 percent of the semiconductor manufacturing is right here in the States.

As reported earlier today, the first processors built using the 32 nm technology (32/billionth of a meter or about 1/millionth of an inch) will use the codename "Westmere," slated for desktop (Clarksdale) and mobile (Arrandale) mainstream systems. Apparently, the Westmere will combine Intel's Nahalem -its latest high-performance micro-architecture- with an integrated graphics/memory controller.

"Outstanding 32nm manufacturing and product health are enabling Intel to accelerate the Westmere production ramp beginning in 2009," said the company. "Additional 32nm products will follow in 2010."

7,000 new jobs sounds like a step in the right direction, and hopefully Americans will see this trend continue as the year unfolds. But even through Intel is investing a huge chunk of money, is now the right time as the economy continues to spiral downward? Time will only tell.

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  • -5 Hide
    zibby , February 11, 2009 10:44 AM
    Obama got them covered with stimulus package. Bringing jobs back here does not make financial sense for large corporations. Why pay 4 times more for salary when there is someone outside US that will do better job for less money, unless Uncle Sam (read Obama) will sponsor your expenses.
  • 3 Hide
    tenor77 , February 11, 2009 12:12 PM
    Quote:
    But even through Intel is investing a huge chunk of money, is now the right time as the economy continues to spiral downward?


    I would say yes. As much as I like AMD since they have the capital to weather this recession they can still invest in research and ventures like this so that when things get better they will have an even larger foothold.

    The company I work for is the same way. We're a market leader in every category, have a ton of capital and no debt and we're still growing and researching and not really cutting back other than backing down on production to adjust for demand. Personally I think it's smart.

    I do find it odd that they would bring production over to the US, though research has traditionally done here. Even so they can hire in cheap right now so it does help with cost.
  • 3 Hide
    chris312 , February 11, 2009 12:39 PM
    Being afraid of the "economy" is a poor reason to make a decision on. If YOUR economy is ok (if you have enough emergency cash and little to no debt) then you have nothing to be worried about. People being afraid of a nebulous thing called the economy, which is somewhere else with other people, is the reason the economy goes up and down so wildly! We ARE the economy. It's up to the people to fix the economy. How would that happen if everyone were too afraid to do business anymore?
  • Display all 14 comments.
  • 2 Hide
    nukemaster , February 11, 2009 12:39 PM
    This is the ONLY way to recover. lay offs actually make the situation worse as it effects all businesses(Company A lays off 1000 works company B gets less business and lays off 400 workers, company C gets less business and lays off workers. Next thing you know half the world can not find work and is on welfare or unemployment insurance). More jobs = more money spent = more jobs = better for all.

    Go Intel!!!!
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , February 11, 2009 1:25 PM
    Right on Intel...if you can afford it right now is a great time to do this. They'll cut back on production but keep plugging away at research...and when the recession ends they'll be right in the front to offer new products and have the capacity to meet a growing demand. Not to mention they'll benefit from being able to build these facilities cheaper in the recession.

    Kudos for keeping the money in the States too!!!
  • 1 Hide
    roofus , February 11, 2009 1:57 PM
    i would imagine there will be some perks for doing this but i applaud them for not falling into the recession stigma and waiting to invest.
  • -2 Hide
    Pei-chen , February 11, 2009 2:29 PM
    tenor77I would say yes. As much as I like AMD since they have the capital to weather this recession they can still invest in research and ventures like this so that when things get better they will have an even larger foothold.The company I work for is the same way. We're a market leader in every category, have a ton of capital and no debt and we're still growing and researching and not really cutting back other than backing down on production to adjust for demand. Personally I think it's smart.I do find it odd that they would bring production over to the US, though research has traditionally done here. Even so they can hire in cheap right now so it does help with cost.

    Exxon Mobile?
  • 1 Hide
    belter , February 11, 2009 3:18 PM
    I worked for Intel in the 90's. They really are a well managed company. They work you hard, but bring out the best in people. You go Intel!
  • 1 Hide
    JonnyDough , February 11, 2009 11:26 PM
    Intel = America
    AMD = Middle East?

    With foreign investments into AMD and the sale of their fabs, is it better for America if Intel prospers? It might be bad for computer tech consumers...but good for America as a whole.
  • 2 Hide
    sniblingloof , February 11, 2009 11:56 PM
    belterI worked for Intel in the 90's. They really are a well managed company. They work you hard, but bring out the best in people. You go Intel!


    the 90s were the golden age for intel employees. nowadays, the story is quite different. we are just numbers to management, numbers to cut or retain. a lot of good, hard working, intelligent people were lost to attrition and morale is definitely down, especially for those on the floor making those chips. hopefully this $7B is invested back into Intel's greatest assets: the workers, who actually care to put out the best products out there (nothing against AMD, I'm sure they have a lot of the same dedicated workers in their organization).
  • 0 Hide
    tenor77 , February 12, 2009 11:41 AM
    Pei-chenExxon Mobile?

    Nice.
    No it's a tech company (not one Tom reports on too often), but I'd rather not say the name or the field. Rather keep my personal and online life apart from business.
  • 0 Hide
    p05esto , February 12, 2009 12:52 PM
    It's good business sense. Right now construction labor and supplies are cheap. If Intel has the funds to build now is the very best time, they'll get the most bang for the buck.

    They also get the good press they are getting with these new jobs which is golden. In a regular economy this wouldn't be much of a news item, but now Itel has the limelight as a successful business expanding and creating jobs. Investors will take notice.

    What a smart decision on their part. Genius. I wouldn't be surprised to see other large companies follow suit and try for some of that "positive press". Best of Breed is what you call Intel.
  • 0 Hide
    eddieroolz , February 12, 2009 3:12 PM
    chris312Being afraid of the "economy" is a poor reason to make a decision on. If YOUR economy is ok (if you have enough emergency cash and little to no debt) then you have nothing to be worried about. People being afraid of a nebulous thing called the economy, which is somewhere else with other people, is the reason the economy goes up and down so wildly! We ARE the economy. It's up to the people to fix the economy. How would that happen if everyone were too afraid to do business anymore?


    You sounded like my geography professor there! :D 
  • 0 Hide
    belter , February 14, 2009 2:10 AM
    sniblingloofthe 90s were the golden age for intel employees. nowadays, the story is quite different. we are just numbers to management
    , numbers to cut or retain. a lot of good, hard working, intelligent people were lost to attrition and morale is definitely down, especially for those on the floor making those chips. hopefully this $7B is invested back into Intel's greatest assets: the workers, who actually care to put out the best products out there (nothing against AMD, I'm sure they have a lot of the same dedicated workers in their organization).

    I think that is the way it is at most companies today...it is tough. Intel was a pressure cooker then, competitive, confrontational, but it motivated people to do amazing things. Most former employees appreciate the company more after they moved on than when they were there.