LONDON Seagate Technology is investing £83 million ($157 million) in its two Northern Ireland factories at Limavady and Springtown. The investment is expected to create 300 new jobs and includes backing of £24.82 million ($47 million) from Invest Northern Ireland, the main economic development agency.
Peter Hain, MP, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, said, “Today’s announcement will see the Springtown plant, already recognised as the most advanced nanotechnology manufacturing facility in the U.K., become Seagate’s main global manufacturing facility and a key development site for read-write heads for computer hard drives. It will also position Limavady as the main development site and preferred source of aluminium substrates for the group’s hard disk drive productsenable the Limavady plant to produce a wider range of aluminium substrates for integration into Seagate’s hard disc drive products.”
Dr. Brian Burns, plant manager at Seagate’s Limavady substrate manufacturing facility, said, “The company sees great opportunities not just in the more traditional areas of computer storage but also in the fast developing consumer electronics environment. These opportunities mean that Seagate is producing a wider range of products and the investment in Limavady will allow the plant to participate in many more of these.”
John Spangler, Seagate vice president and plant manager at the company’s Springtown wafer fabrication facility, said, that the local community would benefit significantly as the number of people working at Seagate’s two factories in the North West would rise to over 2,100, with an annual wage bill of over £45 million ($85 million). In addition, the company spends some £11 million ($20 million) annually on locally sourced goods and services.
Invest Northern Ireland has offered £16.394 million ($12 31 million) towards total eligible project costs of £62.349 million ($118 million) of the Springtown project and £8.421 million ($16 million) towards total eligible project costs of £20.826 million ($39 million) of the Limavady project as part of its North West Action plan which has been designed specifically to help develop the economic strength of the region.