On Thursday, Samsung, the South Korean-based company, officially opened its newest offices in the US, giving them a larger presence in Silicon Valley.
“We really want to leverage the [new site] as the foundation for our presence in Silicon Valley,” Jim Elliott, the corporate vice president of memory marketing at Samsung, said Thursday during the opening ceremony for the company.
The $300 million campus, located just north of downtown San Jose, CA, and about 12 miles their rival Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, will host research and development and sales operations for Samsung’s US semiconductor business, which includes Apple, Nvidia, and many other companies among its clientele. Samsung is the world’s largest memory chip vendor and the second-larges processor maker.
The 1.1 million-square-foot site was designed by the global architecture firm, NBBJ. The campus includes a 10-story office tower, a 7-story parking garage, and an expansive green space linking the campus together. “The design seeks to encourage interaction among staff, foster connections with the community and provide a space to attract employees in the highly competitive tech market,” said Samsung on a website discussing the new campus.
Breaking ground in mid-2013, the campus consolidates over 700 Samsung employees into a single location, and the company can ultimately accommodate up to 2,000 staff members there.
The new offices are an integral part of Samsung’s expansion in Silicon Valley, the hub of the heart of the tech industry and the backyard of their aforementioned rival, Apple. Samsung, however, is not new to the San Francisco Bay Area, as it has conducted research and development and sales operations for semiconductors and displays for over three decades. The company has been making a more significant push over the last couple of years.
Samsung’s presence in Silicon Valley means they can tap into local talent and have chance encounters with entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and startups looking to streamline areas where the company has had struggles, including software and services.
In Silicon Valley, where random encounters on the street, at cafes, and on hiking trails are a part of the every day deal making, Samsung has been missing out on the action. Their fiercest rival, Apple, has been constructing a 2.8-million-square-foot circular campus in Cupertino, its hometown. This allows them to gather partners and employees under one roof to increase the odds they will have the “serendipitous personal encounters” so valued by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.
Samsung is still an enigma, and it is difficult to pinpoint its area of business, as it manufactures everything from toasters to tablets. Furthermore, its executive team does not carry any household names like Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg. By positioning its presence in Silicon Valley, Samsung aims to change that, as well as to become closer to its partners and clients.