UK Economy To Get a Boost From Atmel

TYNESIDE, England — Nov. 10, 2000 — England’s Northeast countryside will likely get an economic shot in the arm when chip-making giant Atmel Corporation begins production in its new Tyneside plant early next year.

Atmel officials told Newcastle’s Journal newspaper recently that the company intends to “use local firms as much as possible for services and materials, wherever the price and quality is right.”

According to the Journal, the local plant is expected to be a $114 million business annually. In addition, the 1,500 workers the company will empoly are expected to pump more than $42 million into the local economy. That number could reach more than $71 million by 2005.

An additional 1,500 jobs could be created by spin-off businesses.

The U.S.-based chip firm originally intended to begin production at the facility by mid-June, 2001. That date may now be as early as mid-April.

Atmel acquired the plant after former owner Siemens shut its doors in 1998, leaving a large portion of the local workforce out in the cold and the economy in a slump. Atmel officials have attributed the upkeep of the facility’s cleanrooms as large factor in the decision to expand there.

–Jeff VanPelt


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