Intel Corp. is going Nordic, announcing plans to open a research and development center in Finland. The semiconductor chip maker plans to hire around 200 people, which comes as good news to Finns fearing the massive upcoming Nokia Corp. layoffs.
Intel is not new to Finland, having most recently worked with Nokia to create the MeeGo operating system. Nokia announced its plan to shift from a MeeGo OS to a Microsoft Corp. phone platform. MeeGo is becoming a research project, which means massive layoffs at Nokia. According to TechEye, the number of layoffs could be as high as 6,000 by the end of April.
An Intel spokeswoman said Intel is currently recruiting hardware and software engineers. She explained the site has not yet opened but the hiring process is already underway.
“I think it’s great that a company like Intel believes in Finnish engineering,” said Ville Vesterinen, co-founder and CEO of Grey Area, a gaming company based in Finland. “I hope this will result in an increased flow of information where Finnish engineers can build a stronger understanding of the ecosystem.”
Vesterinen emphasized the benefit of the relationship between these big company think tanks and talent in Finland for the market overall. “Finnish engineering talent needs more experience with R&D schools like Intel’s to stay on the cutting edge of the industry. After a career at Intel it’s very likely these people will build equally awesome products at other companies, be it startups or bigger ones. This will result in more great companies in the country.”
Besides being extremely valuable for those who are chosen to work at the R&D center, Vesterinen added “Intel will also get amazing talent at a discount when compared to salary demands in places like California’s Silicon Valley. Overall, I think it’s a great move on Intel’s part.”
Google Inc., Skype Ltd., and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. have also announced that they are looking to recruit software experts who have lost their jobs as part of Nokia’s announcement.