IR to Expand Workforce at Newport, Wales Facility

June 07, 2004 by Jeff Shepard

International Rectifier Corp. (IR, El Segundo, CA) CEO Alex Lidow and Welsh First Minister Rhodri Morgan revealed a major initiative to expand IR's workforce and double the production capacity at its facility in Newport, Wales.

The expansion will include the creation of skilled engineering and production jobs to fill the nearly 120 vacancies the company foresees as it brings online its 200 mm (8 in) wafer fabrication facility. Many of the newly created jobs will be devoted to IR's latest proprietary high-voltage IC (HVIC) technology. The HVIC silicon, planned for production on the 200 mm line, will be used in integrated motor controllers for a variety of industrial, appliance and automotive applications.

"IR-Newport is one of our most advanced facilities and, as such, an important part of our business strategy," said Lidow. "Since the acquisition, IR has invested over $66 million dollars to expand our production capabilities in the 150 mm facility and has increased the staff by more than 100. With the great skill sets available here in Wales and greater Europe, and our strong relationships with the Welsh Assembly and Welsh Development Agency, we are ahead of our original expansion plans. These circumstances coupled with strong market demand lead to our decision to bring the 200 mm facility online."