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Apple’s €1billion German HUGE shopping spree!

Whilst Apple’s headset takes all the heat, there is a large investment going on elsewhere

Apple's latest investment in Germany

Slow start

Apple came in to the New Year, like a bat out of hell – with the M2 Mac mini, M2 Pro/Max MacBook Pro’s, and HomePod, all coming out within days of each other, early in January.

In the background, we know the long awaited, and overdue, AR/VR headset is just around the corner, an Apple silicon Mac Pro may be in the pipelines too, and, of course iPhone 15 is coming our way in the fall.

For most tech giants, that may be enough to load on anyone’s plate, but you don’t become a trillion dollar net-worth company by sitting back on your haunches.

One eye must always be kept on the future. And quietly, in the background, that is precisely what Apple has been doing.

Cue a plane trip to Germany…

Calling Europe

Munich, to be exact.

Apple has had a presence in the German city, the capital, and most populous city of the German state of Bavaria, for over forty years. The company opened the first office there, in 1981, with only ten employees.

Wind the clock forwards to today, and that workforce has swelled to a more than 4500 strong workforce, scattered throughout the country. Expansion continues at pace – with Apple Germany, growing by more than eighty percent in the last five years, and adding another 1600 team members in the past three.

In that same five-year period, the local economy has also prospered.

Apple relies on a network of German companies to create a solid, and reliable supply chain. The €18 billion spend, has secured thousands of jobs, with over 800, local companies. In turn, apart from the existing job security, it has also created community development programs, and enabled job creation as well.

When Apple comes to town, it means business.

More please

As of writing, today, Apple has just announced that a gigantic expansion program is about to take place around their Munich facility.

Spread over the next six years, a €1 billion investment program is to take place, as part of its Silicon Design Centre expansion in central Munich. If this sounds faintly familiar, then you’re not mistaken. In 2021, Apple invested €1 billion, when making Munich its headquarters to that facility.

The quality of German technology, and their skilled workforce, had not gone un-noticed by Apple. Munich is already the largest engineering hub in Europe, and the engineering teams there are integral to new innovations that, eventually, make their way to millions of users around the globe. On this latest show of faith in this part of their operation, CEO, Tim Cook, said;

“Our Munich engineering teams are on the cutting edge of innovation, helping imagine new technologies at the heart of the products we make. Apple has been in Munich for more than 40 years, and we’ve never been more excited about what the future holds here.”

The nuts & bolts

This next step in Germany, is laser focused on what its aims are to be.

The Californian company will start off by building a new research facility, in Seidlstrasse. This purpose-built space, will offer the company state-of-the-art, cutting-edge design facilities, with the added benefits of being in a central location. In turn, that will enable Apple’s R&D teams to come together far quicker, and easier, making collaborations, and idea sharing, that much more of a convenient reality.

In the background

You recall those latest M2 Pro, and M2 Max MacBook Pros that I mentioned earlier, well, much of their development took place in the existing Munich sites.

Aside from that, the Apple teams in Germany have also been key to developing unique ideas for the future of Apple silicon designs. They’re currently working on cellular innovation, and looking at ways to even furtherextend the already mighty power, and battery life experienced with Apple silicon devices.

The Apple silicon that is being developed for the Mac Pro, and future Apple silicon Macs, will all, eventually, benefit from this latest investment. Speaking about this next stage of their relationship with Germany, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Technologies, said Johny Srouji, said;

“Our R&D teams in Munich are critical to our efforts to develop products delivering greater performance, efficiency, and power savings. The expansion of our European Silicon Design Centre will enable an even closer collaboration between our more than 2,000 engineers in Bavaria working on breakthrough innovations, including custom silicon designs, power management chips, and future wireless technologies.”

There’s more

As if this Seidlstrasse facility were not a show enough of faith, teams will soon be found at additional research & development spaces in Denisstrasse and Marsstrasse – all part of the same Silicon Design Centre expansion program.

These new facilities will be situated just across the street, from the existing R&D facility at Karlstrasse. Apple looks to be working, ultimately, on creating a central hub of silicon development excellence.

Sites already exist at Arnulfstrasse and Hackerbrücke, meaning the new facilities will go towards forming the ideal, of having a fully functioning, centrally located European Silicon Design Centre.

This Silicon Design Centre, has been created in the shadow of one of Europe’s leading engineering schools and research institutes – the Technical University of Munich.

As part of the cultural investment in the local community, it has seen Apple working closely with the university on technologies related to improving wireless connections, networks, reliability, and security.

An eye to the environment

All of this development program will be carried with sustainability front, and centre from the moment the diggers first start.

Keen to continue the momentum, after achieving their gold ratings from Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Apple has made some serious pledges about how they can help environmentally.

The company is looking closely at making employees commute to the office as clean as possible. So, they have plans in place to support green urban mobility with carbon-free charging points and parking for both cars and bikes.

They are taking their pledges towards the environment seriously, and putting their money where their mouth is.

Apple has sourced enough 100 percent clean, renewable energy to power all their worldwide facilities – such as the power hungry data centres, all the way through to retail stores, and research facilities, since 2018.

Giving back

They are also trying hard to support community-based charity programs, too.

For every hour that an employee volunteers help, or donates money to charities, the company will make a monetary donation to the same organisation through the Employee Giving program.

Whilst this program is not new, having been around since 2011, it has made some pretty meaningful contributions. To date, employees have raised nearly €830 million in global donations, and have volunteered well over 2 million hours to worthwhile causes.

Wrapping up

Germany truly is an important cog in Apple’s global wheel.

The iOS app economy alone supports more than 400,000 jobs there, and German developers have earned more than €3 billion thanks to Apple’s investment in their country’s infrastructure.

Although I’m sure figures can be dressed up in such a way as to favourably colour details, it’s clear, from the levels of investment alone, they are doing their bit. Creating jobs, security, and a prosperous future for the local economy can surely only be a good thing – right?

Having the amount of money in the bank that Apple has, allows them to chase whatever dreams and goals they may have. Whilst large corporations can never operate at this level, without some footprint, it’s clear that at least they’re trying hard to mitigate any collateral damage.

It is this kind of investment that keeps Apple a good few steps ahead of the chasing pack.

And, if we eventually get a wireless codec that allows us to stream lossless audio to our AirPods – remember – you read it here first!

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