Intel Corp recently confirmed that it is spending $10 billion on a new chip plant. The company has come out to say that it is investing another $600 million in expanding its research and development (R&D) center in Israel. This was revealed last week by the company’s CEO; Pat Gelsinger during a one-day trip to Israel which is part of an European tour that Germany and Belgium are part of.
Out of the investment of $600 million, $400 million will be used to remodel its Mobileye unit headquarter in Jerusalem into a research and development (R&D) campus that will be used for research relating to self-driving car technologies. The remaining $200 million will be plunged into building a research and development (R&D) centre in the northern port city of Haifa. The new research and development centre will be called IDC12.
Intel has in the recent past purchased three Israeli tech companies. In 2017, the chip maker bought Mobileye which it is now remodelling into a research and development (R&D) centre for about $15 million. For $2 billion, Artificial Intelligence chipmaker; Habana was purchased. The third acquisition Moovit was purchased for $1 billion about a year ago.
According to Intel, the mega chip design facility will have a capacity of at least 6,000 employees. CEO Pat Gelsinger in a statement released on Sunday said that he sees “a vibrant future for Intel and Israel for decades to come”.
The first phase of construction for the new investment has already been initiated and Intel hopes that it will be able to meet the raging demand of chips that came about as a result of the pandemic.
“Intel Israel’s exports grew to a record $8 billion in 2020 from $6.6 billion in 2019, accounting for 14 percent of total high-tech exports and 2 percent of Israel’s GDP”, Reuters reported.
With almost 14,000 people employed, Intel is the largest employer in Israel’s high-tech industry.