SAN FRANCISCO—The Freescale Semiconductor Inc. fab in East Kilbride, Scotland, which ceased chip production two years ago, has been sold, according to a statement issued Wednesday (Aug. 17) by firms that facilitated the sale.
The East Kilbride Campus, which ceased production in 2009, was acquired by Clowes Developments (Scotland) Ltd., an Edinburgh-based real estate developer. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.
Freescale has maintained R&D and other activities at the East Kilbride site since the fab ceased production in 2009.
Under the terms of the deal, Clowes acquired Freescale's enitre 800,000-square-foot facility located on 26 acres of land. Freescale will lease back from Clowes 70,000-square-feet of office space for research and development, applications engineering, systems architecture and product engineering.
Clowes' plans for developing the site are not immediately known.
An aerial view of the former Freescale campus in East Kilbride, Scotland, which was sold to real estate developer Clowes Developments for an undisclosed sum.
The fab sale was facilitated by ATREG Inc., a Seattle-based global advisory firm, and its former parent company, Colliers International. The same firms advised Freescale on the 2010 sale of its other Scottish semiconductor facility located in Dunfermline to Shepherd Offshore Services Ltd.
"This is the largest industrial disposal in the West of Scotland for some years, and despite challenging market conditions, we were successful in identifying a local buyer," said Iain Davidson, director of logistics and industrial with Colliers International in Scotland. "The transaction itself was not without its complexities given the scale, nature of the site, and our client’s requirement to lease back part of the site. However, we are delighted to have secured the sale to Clowes Developments."
Luckily, we kept a few of those Chinese Nationals in the US...at least for now.
Many of our best-educated immigrants are moving back home to start up companies there. But they keep their US ties, and hopefully both countries will benefit. Scotland (and UK in general) have great technical talent, but lost a lot of that to the US over the years. Globalization started a long long time ago.
That plant contributed to the best Motorola years when they were number one in customer polls for chip making. Now days with so many "manufacturing only" foundries, it is easier to make money by just DESIGNING chips, and let someone else make them. But that will bite back as the Chinese are growing fast in design ability, since they were often the majority at Berkeley EE grad programs.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.