8/7/2011 6:16:00 PM
Times Union: Moving on up(state)
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The story behind M+W Group moving its U.S. headquarters from Plano, Texas, to Watervliet Arsenal is not about the Capital Region beating out the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex to lure a single coveted company to the region.
M+W chose upstate New York over other high-tech hotbeds because the semiconductor industry is booming here more than anywhere else in the country.
"It's where our business is," said Rick Whitney, chief executive officer of M+W U.S., the general contractor for the $4.6 billion computer chip factory that GlobalFoundries is building in Saratoga County. "When we looked at who our clients are, we're seeing more and more of them being located in the Capital Region. This is the one place in the country where we can be side by side with our biggest clients on a daily basis."
That includes not only GlobalFoundries, but also the University at Albany's College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, General Electric Co., IBM and Sematech, according to a list of the company's top customers. All have a major presence in this region -- and several of them could be planning additional manufacturing projects here over the next several years, including a second factory for GlobalFoundries. GE, which has its renewable energy headquarters in Schenectady, is also in the process of planning the largest solar factory in U.S. history.