Seagate Technology Plc hit the news wire again, but not for its long-rumored acquisition of OCZ Technology or missing the quarterly results. The company which was established 33 years ago on the hills between Santa Cruz and Los Gatos suffered a brain drain following its relocation from historical Scott’s Valley, CA to Cupertino (company is officially headquartered in Dublin, Ireland – but that’s in the same category as ASUSTeK or Dell in Singapore).
The company recently became aggressive in its pursuit of new talent and facilities in order to answer yet unannounced manufacturing push from Western Digital Corporation, which is working on building a new factory in China, as well as attracting top engineering talent from troubled companies like STEC.
Entrance into Solyndra’s Fremont campus, sharing the same highway exit as successful companies such as Patriot Memory and Digital Strom.
Seagate decided to hit closer to home, though. The company entered a deal to acquire former headquarters and manufacturing facility belonging to a project that could be the biggest mistake of the current administration. At least, that’s what opponents of the current U.S. President allude to.
With the acquisition of Solyndra’s former HQ and the manufacturing facility, Seagate plans to further strengthen its manufacturing in the United States, just a few hundred feet from Tesla’s manufacturing facility (formerly known as NUMMI). At press time, it was not known if the facility will serve as the new HQ and a cause for second relocation in as many years, but we know that Seagate got the facility "for cheap". According to the sources in the know, the property was valued at approximately $300 million, with Seagate Technology paying a bit above 50 cents to the dollar ($150M).
All in all, we cannot finish this story without making a clear point in the high-tech manufacturing renaissance – over the past two weeks, we heard that GlobalFoundries won approval for expanding its NY Fab (from 210,000 sq. ft. to 300,000 sq. ft. – total investment around $8.6 billion), Samsung decided to further invest in its Austin facility (bringing the total investment to $13 billion), Google looking for manufacturing premises in San Jose area (for Google Nexus Q), RED Digital Cinema Camera expanding its manufacturing facility in Lake Forest, CA (Greater LA Area).