We'll stick with world-class Irish team - Intel
US tech firm's vote of confidence in talent pool
Intel will continue to develop cutting-edge chips at its Irish facility, one of its most senior global executives has said.
"The team we have here which designed our new Quark processors is world-class," said Mike Bell, vice-president and manager of its new devices division. "We intend to keep developing that. We recently started printing the phrase 'Designed in Ireland' on some of our boards. We couldn't be happier with how that's gone."
Intel employs almost 10,000 people in Leixlip, Co Kildare, when contractors and construction workers are included.
Mr Bell was speaking during an interview with the Irish Independent at Dublin's Web Summit, where he also outlined his vision for the future of 'wearable' devices, including smartwatches and health-monitoring devices.
The news comes as several large US tech companies, including Twitter, Dropbox and Evernote, said that the loss of the 'Double Irish' tax scheme will not affect investment plans here.
"We're here for talent and to build our team out," said Dropbox founder Drew Houston. "Other things aren't as important as that."
Meanwhile, the Irish co-founder of the billion-dollar online payments start-up Stripe said that the firm was set to succeed in China because of the way it respects partnerships with local companies. John Collison (24) said that many US firms had failed to successfully enter the Chinese market because of the way they have gone about it.
"They've often tried to own the whole process from start to finish. Sometimes that's not the smartest way to do it. We've chosen to team up with strong local partners there."
Earlier this year, Stripe announced a partnership deal with Alipay, which is China's most popular online payment method - it is used for over half of all Chinese online transactions. Stripe has taken Silicon Valley by storm in the last two years, with Limerick-born John and Patrick Collison establishing the firm as one of the world's fastest-growing online commerce companies.
However, Mr Collison said that the brothers had no intention of selling the company any time soon, despite its valuation of over €1bn. "We're not seeking an exit, no," he said. "I honestly don't know what we'd do instead if we did that."
Fashion model and co-founder of the social network Impossible.com, Lily Cole, told the audience that she had become involved with the 'ethical' fashion brand label Edun, owned by Bono and Ali Hewson. "It's important to be aware of the background into where clothes come from," she said.
"There's a huge number of really fascinating companies that I would like to try to champion. Edun supports clothes manufactured in Africa."
Elsewhere at the summit the founder of Bebo, Michael Birch, said the social network was to be relaunched this month. Mr Birch sold the network to US giant firm AOL in 2008 for €680m before buying it back in July last year for €750,000.