Consumer goods

Huawei to invest £1 billion and create 400 jobs at new optoelectronics centre

Thursday 25 June 2020, 7:01 PM

2 Minute Read

Huawei has won planning consent for the first phase of a major new optoelectronics research, development and manufacturing centre in Cambridge.
The Chinese-owned tech giant will invest £1 billion in the first phase of the project which includes the construction of a 538,195 sq ft site, expected to create 400 direct jobs. Once fully operational, it will become the international headquarters of Huawei’s optoelectronics business.

The first phase of the project will focus on the research, development, and manufacturing of optical devices and modules – an integrated model that promises to bring innovation faster to market. The investment is a major boost for the continued growth of Cambridge as a world-leading technology hub.

Optoelectronics is a key technology used in fibre optic communication systems and this investment aims to bring the best of such technology to data centres and network infrastructure around the world.

Victor Zhang, Vice-President of Huawei, said: The UK is home to a vibrant and open market, as well as some of the best talent the world has to offer. It’s the perfect location for this integrated innovation campus. We want to help enshrine the UK’s leading position in optoelectronics and promote UK technology on a global scale.

Today’s approval follows over three years of work and planning. Huawei began the search for the ideal location back in 2017 and completed the acquisition of the 500-acre South Cambridgeshire site in 2018.

Henk Koopmans, chief executive officer of Huawei Technologies Research and Development UK, said “Our application has been carefully considered for transport, ecology, heritage, visual impact, noise and air quality issues.”

Huawei employs 1,600 people in the UK and this year marks the company’s 20th year of operating in this market. Huawei supplies telecoms network equipment to all the major mobile and broadband service providers in the UK, as well as offering a range of world leading smartphones to UK consumers.

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