Tim Cook opens new Apple office in Cork, Ireland

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Irish flag
Apple has been based in Cork since 1980.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Tim Cook is in County Cork, Ireland today, opening the new expansion of Apple’s Hollyhill site — creating many jobs in the process.

Apple is Cork’s largest private employer, having had a presence in the area for decades. It is home to Apple’s only wholly owned manufacturing facility in the world, building “made-to-order” iMacs for customers in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

Since 2012, Apple has invested close to 220 millions euros ($254 million) in developing its Hollyhill campus. The new building, announced in 2016, provides space for 1,400 employees.

This is a substantial increase on the 5,000 employees the company previously has in Ireland. Provided all of those are new jobs, it is roughly in line with Apple’s overall workforce expansion, which is growing at around 25 percent per year in recent years. Over the past five years, Apple’s Irish team has doubled in size.

Apple first opened its Cork business back in November 1980, shortly after the release of the Apple II. At the time, the Hollyhill site had just 60 employees.

Tim Cook’s visit to the area — as part of a European tour, which saw him visit the Netherlands over the weekend — is likely to reassure some people. Apple has previously come under fire for its tax practices in Ireland, leading to the accusation that Ireland has given Apple a sweetheart deal that allows it to pay less tax.

More notably, the company recently ditched its plans to build an 850 million euro ($960 million) data center in Athenry, County Galway in Ireland. This came after several years of delays in the approval process, leading Apple to decide it wasn’t worth the headache to move forward.

By paying a visit to County Cork, Cook reconfirmed Apple’s ties to the area.

Source: Evening Echo