Reports: Chip firm considering Chatham County site is no longer interested

Johnston County launches new jobs platform to connect workers to local jobs

NEW HILL – Triangle Innovation Point has been crossed off the list by one project team in the semiconductor industry that had previously been reported to be considering the site for a possible manufacturing facility.

This development was first reported by the Chatham News & Record with further reporting conducted by the News & Observer.

WRAL TechWire previously reported that the site could garner interest from semiconductor manufacturers, though other companies were actively considering the site as well.

“We’re fortunate to have a lot of interest and activity in Chatham County,” said Michael Smith, president of the Chatham Economic Development Corporation, in an interview with WRAL TechWire.  “We’re getting a number of looks from a lot of large operations, and we’re very fortunate for that.”

And those conversations have accelerated in the last 6-12 months, said Smith.  “A lot of major operations are looking to shorten their supply chains,” he added.

Semiconductor firms reportedly consider Triangle for massive manufacturing plant

Chatham County is home to the Triangle Innovation Point (TIP) site as well as the Chatham-Siler City Advanced Manufacturing (CAM) site, both of which are state-certified and ready for investment, Smith told WRAL TechWire.

““Those two state-certified 2,000-acre plus sites, right here, between two of the largest metropolitan statistical areas in the state,” said Smith.

Sources have previously told WRAL TechWire that the number of entities considering the 2,150 acre TIP site in Chatham County ranged between 15 and 20.

The TIP site could be the only conceivable location in North Carolina to locate a semiconductor plant, an executive in the semiconductor industry told WRAL TechWire earlier this month. Others affiliated with the site have told the News & Observer that the site is not seeking companies from any specific industry including Jason Kaplan, the managing member of Moncure Holdings LLC.

Chip maker: Talent, power, ‘favorable regulatory environment’ among new plant priorities

Kaplan mentioned the possibility of a company with ties to the electric vehicle industry that could be interested in one or both Chatham County sites in the interview with the News & Observer.

Toyota Motor Company announced a $1.29 billion investment in Randolph County in December.  John Boyd, Jr., a site selection consultant, told WRAL TechWire in November that the electric vehicle industry is “an especially timely target for North Carolina.”

The CAM site in Chatham County is a ten-minute drive from the Toyota site, Smith told WRAL TechWire.

“The opportunities for businesses considering that CAM site,” said Smith.  “That’s another exciting thing we have going for us,” he said, adding that the announcement from Toyota “puts us on the map, and it’s a growth industry that we’d be interested in, should the opportunity arise.”

Toyota move ‘establishes NC as a hub’ for EVs, says economic development exec

“Toyota may view North Carolina as a fertile recruiting location, becoming a leading, employer of choice within the nascent and soon to boom EV industry,” Boyd, Jr., added.

The Chatham County sites may have interest from life science companies, as well.  Smith noted that the recent announcement from FUJIFILM-Diosynth Biotechnologies to invest $2 billion in Holly Springs, as well as the selection of a site in Lee County by Abzena, Pfizer, and Audentes Therapeutics, could lead companies to consider the Triangle Innovation Point site.  ““Our Triangle Innovation Point site is right in between the two of those locations that have had a lot of life science success in the past six to 12 months,” said Smith.

“2021 was a record year, and it was really exciting for all of us, and I look forward to carrying that momentum forward, as it looks like 2022 will be another great year,” said Smith.  “It’s a great time be in North Carolina.”

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Kassie Hoffman
Kassie pens down all the news from the world of politics on ANH.