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Chip giant ASML plans to expand in Eindhoven with a big win for Dutch technology


Chip giant ASML intends to stay and expand in the Netherlands, with the chip machine manufacturer signing a non-binding letter of intent with Eindhoven City Council, as it eyes potential expansion at its Brainport Industries Campus (BIC), west of the city.
BIC is located in the Brainport district of Eindhoven - a major technology and innovation hub in Europe - and is dedicated to the high-tech manufacturing industry. For ASML, BIC represents an “interesting option,” Roger Dassen, the company’s chief financial officer, said in a statement. To the proximity of the university campus of Veldhoven, where the company's headquarters are located.

The initial agreement appears to allay concerns about rumors of ASML moving abroad, and although the company has never confirmed or denied the existence of such a move, it has raised concerns about the challenges of attracting talent and the general business climate in the Netherlands.

The potential transfer will have a significant impact on the Dutch technology sector and economy, especially since ASML is not only a leading global supplier of chip-making equipment, it is also the world's only manufacturer of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography machines - needed for the most advanced chips.

In addition, the chip machinery manufacturer is one of the largest and most profitable employers in the Netherlands, with sales reaching €27.6 billion in 2023.

In an effort to keep the tech crown jewel at home, the Dutch government launched “Operation Beethoven” last month, and the €2.5 billion initiative aims to improve infrastructure, housing, arts education, and attract talent – especially in the Eindhoven region .

“Decisions regarding the future locations of our company must be supported by favorable conditions, such as the availability of talent, infrastructure, housing and an overall strong investment climate,” Roger Dassin, the company’s chief financial officer, said in a statement.

“Recently announced government measures are contributing to this.”

However, the deal is not set in stone yet, discussions will continue and a final decision from both parties is expected in June.

If the plan goes ahead, ASML could double its current workforce in the Netherlands, which now stands at around 20,000 people.

Micky Andreances, Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate, described the agreement as “good news”, and the minister said on the Ex website: “It confirms confidence in our business climate in the Netherlands and confirms the government’s support for the chip sector.”