As news broke that Apple is going to invest $100 million to bring some Mac production back to the U.S., Foxconn has announced that it is planning U.S. expansion. Related? Yeah, that’s a fair bet.
It doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes or the crew from CSI to put the pieces together here. Foxconn makes most of Apple’s products. Apple is investing in U.S. production with other people, and Bloomberg is reporting Foxconn has plans for the U.S. too.
Louis Woo said to Bloomberg: “We are looking at doing more manufacturing in the U.S. because, in general, customers want more to be done there…”. However, there are challenges to supply chains that cannot be overlooked:
“Supply chain is one of the big challenges for U.S. expansion,” Woo said. “In addition, any manufacturing we take back to the U.S. needs to leverage high-value engineering talent there in comparison to the low-cost labor of China.”
When you can literally have component parts being made next door or around the corner from you, changing that model to having to ship components across the ocean makes being nimble—challenging.
Make no mistake, we doubt that these announcements aren’t related, so it will be interesting to watch in 2013 what develops on the U.S. manufacturing (or mac-ufacturing) side of things.