Western Digital is moving its headquarters from Lake Forest to Irvine and is celebrating with a ribbon cutting Sept. 9.
The hard-drive manufacturer will consolidate its Orange County operations into a building in the city's Park Place on Michelson Drive, with plans to relocate nearly 1,500 local employees to the new space over the next year.
But Irvine – which boasts a thriving tech sector – isn't entirely new to Western Digital. The firm was headquartered in the city between 1981 and 2000, roughly half of the firm's 40 years in business, said spokesman Steve Shattuck.
The move back to Irvine is a result of the company's growth over the past 10 years, which has required it to expand into other locations through the county, he said.
Among its developments: Western Digital acquired SiliconSystems in March 2009, adding an additional facility in Aliso Viejo. More recently, the company reported revenue of $2.4 billion in its fourth quarter ended July 2, up from $1.9 billion at the same time in 2009.
"Consolidating all our Southern California personnel under one roof will facilitate tighter team collaboration, improve operational efficiencies, rationalize facilities costs and offer flexibility for future growth," said John Coyne, president and CEO.
Officials also point to the space's close proximity to employees' homes, cost effectiveness and the building's flexibility as reasons for the move.
“Western Digital represents what Irvine is all about, which is innovation and technology," added Mayor Sukhee Kang. "The tech sector is both vibrant and ever-evolving, and so is Western Digital.”
Colliers negotiates $4.9 million deal in H.B.
Smile Brands relocates to Irvine Spectrum
Irvine's Ultimate Ears joins forces with Capitol Studios