Benchmark Electronics Inc., an engineering, design and manufacturing services provider, has opened a new precision technologies facility in Mesa that will create 100 new jobs.
Benchmark Precision Technologies, a services group of Benchmark Electronics (NYSE: BHE), on Friday celebrated the grand opening of its 64,000-square-foot facility at 730 E. Baseline Road.
The company invested more than $20 million in the facility, which will manufacture products used for equipment that makes semiconductors.
Benchmark plans to hire 55 people to work at the new facility in its first year and ramp up its workforce to a total of 100 people in the future.
The new facility allows Benchmark to meet growing demand from its clients for semiconductor capital equipment, Jeff Benck, president and CEO of Benchmark, said at the grand opening event.
“We worked very closely in partnership with one of our top customers, Applied Materials, to define the right capability and capital equipment in this facility to support their growing needs,” Benck said. “We’re very excited to play a significant role in the growing technology footprint throughout the Valley, which includes semiconductor design and manufacturing, creation of complex industrial solutions, and a growing aerospace and defense sector.”
The facility expands Benchmark Precision Technologies’ capacity for a cleanroom and metal joining applications, including tungsten inert gas and electron beam welding, precision cleaning and other chemical finishes.
Benchmark manufactures electronic systems and components in a range of markets, including aerospace and defense, computing, complex industrial, medical and next-generation telecommunications.
Benchmark relocated from Texas to Arizona in 2017. The company opened its Tempe headquarters in 2019.
In addition to its global headquarters in Tempe, Benchmark operates three manufacturing facilities in the Valley, including its newly opened plant in Mesa. The company also has production facilities in California, Minnesota, Alabama, New Hampshire and Mexico.
Benchmark had a record-breaking year in 2022 as its year-over-year revenue increased 28% to nearly $3 billion. It added more than 1,500 employees in 2022, boosting its total workforce to 13,500, Benck said.
Arizona is poised to become a semiconductor hub with Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Inc. (NYSE: TSM) building projects that call for either expanding or building new fabrication facilities in the Valley.
“While we don’t build chips, we build capital equipment that helps produce those chips. So with customers like Applied Materials and ASM, we’re part of that ecosystem,” Benck said.
“We think 2024 and beyond is going to have huge growth,” Benck continued. “We also do quite a bit of aerospace and defense work here in the state. We love being located near a lot of our customers like Raytheon and Honeywell, who are right here in the Valley as well as in Tucson. We also see a huge growth opportunity in aerospace and defense, and supporting that industry.”
Benchmark’s grand opening event was attended by Gov. Katie Hobbs, Rep. Greg Stanton, Mesa Mayor John Giles, Sandra Watson, president and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority, and technology industry leaders.
“Arizona is home to the fastest-growing manufacturing sector in the country. This is critical as this growth means more and more good paying jobs and billions of dollars in international investment into Arizona’s economy,” Hobbs said. “Benchmark’s expansion is further proof of this … while we receive national attention for anchor investments from Intel and TSMC, it’s the suppliers, servicers and supportive industries that will buoy Arizona’s workers and innovators.”
This week, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced the first funding opportunity via CHIPS for America, which will provide more than $52 billion to revitalize the nation’s semiconductor industry.
Arizona is well-positioned to lead the country in advanced manufacturing due in part to investments at local and state levels, said Stanton, who was among the first co-sponsors of the CHIPS for America Act.
“There’s no better example than Benchmark expanding their operations here in the East Valley,” Stanton said in a statement. “This new cutting-edge facility will help us take control of our semiconductor supply chains, protect our national security, and create good-paying jobs here at home.”
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