Japanese electronics giant TDK is about to found a second development center in Israel that will employ dozens of engineers, the company's representative in Israel has told "Globes." The company will also expand the workforce in its existing development center by 40%.
TDK is also in the final stages of negotiations with a number of Israeli startups to develop products for the company, which TDK will distribute worldwide through its distribution channels. TDK's investment in Israel will be in the tens of millions of dollars. The concern has a market cap of $11.2 billion.
TDK has opened offices in Karmiel, and company representative Narutoshi Fukuzawa has been living in Israel for over a year, looking for suitable technologies and companies. In his first Israeli media interview, Fukuzawa said that the decision to establish the development center in Israel was taken by TDK's management council in Japan. He added that the amount of investment and the size of the center were almost unlimited and depended on the sphere of development selected by the concern among the alternatives brought to it.
TDK already operates a development and manufacturing center of TDK Lambda in Israel with 260 employees. Another decision taken by the concern's management is to expand the business of the Israeli plant by 40% and add a new product line to it, while recruiting dozens of new employees. TDK Lambda-Israel sales director Yaron Eyni says that the Israeli company has shown its efficiency in production and has brought production processes back from China to the plant in Israel.
As part of opening the planned R&D center, TDK plans on bringing to Israel an exhibition of hundreds of products and technologies that it produces around the world in order to display them to the Israeli high-tech industry for the purpose of creating cooperative efforts, technologies, and innovation. TDK representative director president and CEO Shigenao Ishiguro will also attend the exhibition for the purpose of meeting with economic and political leaders and examining R&D opportunities first hand. Fukuzawa says that the exhibition is being sent outside Japan for the first time, showing the importance that the concern attaches to Israeli high tech.
Global concern TDK's revenue totaled $11.6 billion last year. The concern operates 110 plants, R&D centers, and sales offices throughout the world with 103,000 employees. TDK has abandoned the media products, CDs, and cassettes that it produced in the 1980s. It now makes power supplies, sensors, energy storage devices, and energy converter devices installed in the products of companies like LG, Toshiba, Siemens, Microsoft, and others. TDK says that Israel is its fourth R&D center after the US, Europe, and China.
TDK recently invested in Israeli startup StoreDot, with which a joint development agreement (JDA) was signed at an investment of millions of dollars to develop technology for high-speed charging of lithium batteries. Fukuzawa says that the deal demonstrates TDK's intentions, because it is not confining itself to just a capital investment; it is bringing added value in production, purchase of raw materials, and distribution of the product. He said that startups in Israel are producing amazing ideas and TDK is offering them the ability to open doors and promote the product in global markets.
TDK is currently in negotiations with several Israeli startups and is likely to reach final agreements soon. Among other things, it is considering energy storage, contact sensors, and wireless charging products and technologies. Another agreement to develop energy technology is slated for signing in which the Israeli company will develop a product according to the specifications of TDK itself. TDK said it was already recruiting personnel for this project.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on May 27, 2018
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