A top Micron Technology leader wouldn’t confirm if the company is looking to build a so-called “mega fab” in Boise. But he wouldn’t deny it either.
“Fab” is industry lingo for a fabrication plant.
Micron’s SVP and General Counsel Rob Beard told BoiseDev that with the recently passed CHIPS and Science Act passed by Congress last month, the Boise-based company would look to make a decision on where to build facilitates in the US in the coming weeks.
“We’ve wanted to build a mega-fab in the US for a long time. Now that this legislation is in place, we are able to make some investment decisions. We are looking at several different places and it’s a competitive process.”
As BoiseDev has reported since last fall, based on extensive reporting and questions of sources surrounding the company, Boise is one of the locations in the running for expansion. The US Commerce Secretary confirmed the reporting last month. But Micron has not.
In the running?
When we asked Beard if Boise is one of the sites in the running, he said it would be a “bad idea” to comment on any of the places and noted an announcement would come in the weeks ahead.
Last month, while pressing for passage of the CHIPS and Science bill, US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo told BoiseDev’s Margaret Carmel that Micron was looking to expand in Idaho. We asked if Raimondo was wrong.
“I would not want to criticize the Commerce Secretary. I wouldn’t do that,” Beard said. “We are looking at several different places. It’s a competitive process, and it runs best when we are careful about confidentially.”
He did say that the locations in the running do know they are part of the process and have for quite some time.
The potential for expansion in Boise first caught BoiseDev’s attention when Boise Mayor Lauren McLean was absent from a November 2021 Boise City Council meeting. The City of Boise’s spokesperson at the time told us she was on a business attraction mission for the city. Since that initial reporting, three sources with direct knowledge of the project have told BoiseDev that Boise is a potential site for expansion. And a large number of other sources wouldn’t deny it was.
The Idaho Legislature passed a bill, which Gov. Little signed, providing tax breaks to semiconductor makers to expand in Idaho.
The stakes for Boise and Idaho are high. Beard said the mega-fab site could contribute “thousands of jobs.”
“The mega-fab is a multi-phase concept where you’d start construction in the next few months and you’d take many years to build,” he said. “It would have many phases, many fabs, and lots of clean room space. It’s a big multi-phase project.”
Boise site possibilities
CNBC anchor Sara Eisen asked Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra about BoiseDev’s reporting last month.
“There are reports, I don’t believe you’ve confirmed them yet, that you are looking at building a fabrication plant in Boise, Idaho… is that true,” Eisen asked. “What are your plans?”