Intel to close Hudson plant, lay off 700

The world’s leading chipmaker plans to stop making chips in Massachusetts. Intel Corp. said on Thursday that the company will close its factory in Hudson by the end of 2014, resulting in the loss of about 700 jobs.

“The facility and the site do not meet the requirements that we need,” said Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy. The factory, originally built by defunct computer company Digital Equipment Corp., was acquired by Intel in 1998. It uses chipmaking technology that’s more than a decade old, and four generations behind the equipment used in Intel’s most advanced factories. As a result, the Hudson plant has been used to make a variety of low-end chips found in many electronic devices. The factory does not produce more sophisticated microprocessors, like the Core, Xeon and Atom chips, which are Intel’s best-known and most lucrative products.

Mulloy said that about 100 workers would be laid off over the next three to four months. The remainder of the workforce would stay on until the plant is closed. These workers will be offered a severance package, but will also be given a chance to seek other jobs at Intel. Mulloy said that the plant will run near full capacity until it’s closed, in order to fill existing orders, and to build up inventories of obsolete chips which will no longer by made once the Hudson plant is shut down.

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Intel also operates a research and development facility in Hudson which employs an additional 850 workers. This facility will continue in operation and its workers will not by affected by the job cuts.