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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

BDS Fail: Intel builds high tech empire in Israel

From The Media Line:
In Israel’s high tech economy, the local operations of Intel Corp. stand out as a kind of high tech economy all of its own.

The world’s biggest maker of computer chips has been operating in Israel for four decades, long before many of the country’s start-up entrepreneurs were born. It has four research and development centers that have produced some of the company’s best-selling products and, in contrast to most of the technology multinationals present in Israel, also manufactures products in plants in Kiryat Gat and Jerusalem.

With nearly 8,000 people on its payroll, it is the largest private sector employer in Israel, accounting for 10% of all the jobs in Israel’s total electronics and software industry. Last year, its exports reached $2.2 billion, making it the country’s biggest single exporter of high technology. It even acts as a venture capitalist.

In 2011 Intel’s Israel operations marked a new milestone by both developing and producing a product entirely inside the country.

“Today Intel Israel is at the core of the global company, with a central role in developing new products like Sandy Bridge and the Ivy Bridge. We ourselves are in sync for the first time, with a product both designed and produced in Israel,” Maxine Fassberg, an Intel vice president and general manager for Israel, told The Media Line on the sidelines of a news conference on Sunday to discuss the company’s 2011.

All told, products developed in Israel accounted for 40% of worldwide sales for Intel last year, said Muli Eden, who arrived in Israel last week to take up the post of Intel Israel president alongside Fassberg.

Total exports by Intel from Israel since 1999 have reached $22.4 billion. Last year as it was re-tooling in Kiryat Gat, Intel made purchases of $628 million in Israel – everything from production equipment to lunchroom napkins – and contributed indirectly as much as $4.5 billion to the economy. The U.S. company has invested in 64 start-ups since 1998.

“Israel is the No.3 foreign country in the world in terms of Intel’s investments. After the U.S., China, India, its Israel. Intel invests more in Israel than in Europe,” said Oren Reiss, the outgoing general manager of the Kiryat Gat plant.

Additionally, ex-Intel employees have formed about 20 start-up companies every year since 2006, creating about 250 workplaces. “We regard ourselves as a school for the Israeli industry,” Fassberg said.
The article goes on to say that even through wars and rockets, Intel Israel has never missed a manufacturing deadline.

(h/t/ Yoel)