Apple to set up Israel development center

Aharon Aharon will head Apple's first ever development center outside of its California headquarters.

By GLOBES/SHMULIK SHELACH
December 14, 2011 23:30
1 minute read.
iphones

iphones R 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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Apple Inc. has decided to open a development center in Israel focusing on semiconductors, the first R&D venture for the company outside the United States, sources told Globes Wednesday.

The decision was made even before the company entered into talks to acquire Herzliya-based flash storage solutions provider Anobit Ltd.

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Apple has hired Aharon Aharon, a veteran player in Israel's high tech industry, to lead the new development center.

Although Apple is a global innovation leader, the company is a relatively small investor in R&D. The producer of the iPad and iPhone invested $2.4 billion in R&D in 2010, which was only 2% of its revenue, much less proportionately than other high-tech companies.

Apple's deployment of R&D activities is in line with this policy and the company has only one technology development center, which is at company headquarters in Cupertino, California. All activities outside of company headquarters revolve around marketing, sales and support. Strategic development is carried out at home. The planned Israel center will therefore be the company's first such center outside of its California headquarters.

Aharon Aharon will come to Apple with a varied background that will assist him in setting up a semiconductors operation for a foreign company. His most high-tech venture was Camero Tech Ltd., which develops Radio Frequency (RF) based imaging systems, and which he founded in 2004 with Amir Beeri.



Aharon serves as chairman of Camero Tech. Before that he was chairman of embedded security solutions developer Discretix Inc. and managed their Israel development center. Earlier still he was VP operations at Zoran Corp.(Nasdaq: ZRAN), having begun his career at IBM's Haifa development center where he reached the post of deputy director.

Aharon is scheduled to spend several months at Apple headquarters in Cupertino before returning to Israel to begin activities at the Apple Israel development center. He will begin operations regardless of whether Apple buys an Israeli company, and will begin hiring staff suitable for the US company's planned areas of activity.

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