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Intel invests in Ireland

Total sum small potatoes

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Intel is to invest over €50m ($63.5m, £44.3m) to expand Irish operations, a move that will boost employment at its R&D facilities in Shannon by 134 jobs over the next four years.

According to IDA Ireland, the investment will raise total staffing at the facility to 300. Two projects will be supported by the funding, one in hardware and one in software.

The hardware component will include design and validation of 32nm embedded processors for "small to medium sized businesses," according to IDA Ireland. The software project will focus on Intel's QuickAssist Technology, which is aimed at boosting the performance of what Intel refers to as "high-bandwidth and low-latency accelerators."

In a statement commenting on the expansion, Intel Ireland's general manager Jim O’Hara said: "In our highly competitive and rapidly changing global markets, success is hard earned...[This investment] makes a genuine contribution to the advancement of Ireland and of Ireland in Europe."

While the addition of 134 employees over four years is, indeed, a "genuine contribution," it's a small one - especially considering that the giant chipmaker is currently executing a layoff plan that will cut 5,000 to 6,000 jobs worldwide, including 200 to 300 at its Leixlip plant in Ireland.

But while one hand cuts the other reaches into its wallet: Intel recently announced that it would invest $7b (£4.9b) over the next two years in the US alone.

Compared to that figure, the €50m for R&D in Shannon is small potatoes - but there are 134 Irishmen who'll be quite happy with those spuds. ®

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