Business, Hardware

Intel to Invest $3.2 Billion in Israel and Ireland Chip Factories


Following brilliant financial results for 2010, Intel decided to open up it’s safe and started to spread the wealth: annual bonus for the employees was quadrupled, meaning a lot of Intel’s employees started to plan on what to do next with their families. Among couple of dozen Intel employees I know personally, I learned a few sportscars from the Far East, convertibles, couple of pools and even several trips around the world for the family.

Now that the employee gifting is over and done with, Intel’s management is turning their heads towards the future. The company decided to invest 2.7 billion dollars in retooling its Israeli-based fab.

The Israeli facility will only be the second facility to produce wafers in 22nm process, starting in December of this year. As a part of this $2.7 billion investment, over 1,000 people will be employed – increasing the headcount of Kiryat Gat Fab to over 8,000 people. Currently, the Fab provides for 7,057 employees.

But this is not the only investment Intel has decided on. The company is also investing 500 million dollars [in 2011 alone] in order to re-open the facility in Ireland. Fab 14 was located in Leixlip and Intel’s management decided to close the Fab in summer of 2009, closing almost 300 jobs in the process. This was one of the smallest Fabs Intel has in operation, leaving Fab 10, 24 and 24-2 running chip manufacturing [Atom, chipsets] using older 90nm and 65nm processes.

Fab 14 is expected to re-open shortly, with a 24 month upgrade for the production of future processors. EE Times speculates that Intel just might use Fab 14 as the fab where Intel could re-tool to 450mm wafers.