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Toshiba America to Build $35-Million Plant in Irvine

October 30, 1985|JOYCE GARCIA | Times Staff Writer

Toshiba America Inc. has acquired 26.2 acres in Irvine for a $35-million West Coast facility to house its industrial electronics business sector, which now occupies offices in Tustin, 10 miles away.

Construction is scheduled to begin later this year on the Irvine facility, which is targeted for completion in the fall of 1986.

At least 500 people will be employed at the new location, including 300 now working at the Tustin offices, company officials said, with the remaining employees probably being hired from the area.

The industrial electronics business sector has outgrown its Tustin location, said Duane Bazzett, general administration manager for Toshiba's West Coast corporate offices. He added that the sector's Tustin office will be shut down when the 350,000-square-foot Irvine research, development and manufacturing facility opens.

The company's Electronics Components division, which manufactures semiconductors and employs about 200 people, is located in separate offices in Tustin and will remain there, a company spokeswoman said.

Toshiba America, a wholly owned subsidiary of Toshiba Corp. of Japan, will also manufacture medical systems, such as X-ray diagnostic systems and computer tomography at the Irvine building, marking what officials said will be a first for an American subsidiary of a Japanese company.

Systems from such companies had been imported from Japan for a number of years, Bazzett said, but his company's growth--30% in the last year--has given Toshiba enough reason to begin domestic manufacturing operations. "We'll be able to react to the U.S. market better," he said. "We can tailor our operations in this market and react much quicker to it."

He added that Toshiba will also begin manufacturing telecommunications systems in Orange County, which would mark the first time the company has done so in the United States.

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