Foxconn, the Taiwan-headquartered electronics manufacturer, opened a new manufacturing facility in Wisconsin, U.S. yesterday. The planned $10-billion plant is considered one of the largest foreign direct investment projects ever in the United States.
President of the United States, Donald J. Trump made an appearance at the groundbreaking ceremony, accompanied by Masayoshi Son, Founder and CEO of Japanese investment behemoth SoftBank, and Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou.
The manufacturing facility will provide some 10,000 construction job listings over a two-year time frame.
The complex, which Trump lauded as “the 8th wonder of the world”, includes a 20 million square foot campus spanning across 1,200 hectares.
Trump said the company has discovered that
there is no better place to build, hire and grow than right here in the United States.
Foxconn has promised that the liquid-crystal display facility will eventually employ as much as 13,000 workers in full production. It also claims that the average annual salary offered will reach US$53,000 – this surpasses the median personal income of $31,099 in the US.
Governments at all levels in the States collectively offered US$4 billion worth of tax incentives to clinch the deal, CNN and The Wall Street Journal reported .
Founded in 1974 by Terry Gou, the world’s largest electronics contract manufacturer remains China’s largest private-sector employer, keeping about 1.2 million on its payroll.
Apple is inarguably its largest client, contributing about 54 percent of the company’s revenue.
Besides being the main assembler for Apple’s iPhones and iPads, Foxconn also scoops deals from a wide array of tech giants including Amazon, Dell, HP, Cisco, Huawei and Lenovo.
Foxconn’s total worldwide revenue rose to US$158.2 billion in 2017, up from US$140.6 billion a year earlier. In December last year, the company witnessed a whopping 50 percent year-on-year revenue rise from strong iPhone X sales.
Before its entry into the US, Foxconn mainly based its production facilities in China and owned several plants in India, with smartphone maker Xiaomi as one of their biggest clients in the region. The electronics that Foxconn assembled in Asia would then be redistributed and sold in Europe and the US. Over the past years, the manufacturing giant has been seeking new growth opportunities beyond smartphones – mainly on AI – and pledged a major investment of at least $340 million into AI-based research and development over the next five years.
Featured Image: Breaking ground with a golden shovel. (Reuters/Darren Hauck)