Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company (HPE) in Chippewa Falls, WI. announces plans to invest $22 million into their Chippewa Falls facility formerly run by supercomputing company Cray Inc. to turn it into high-performance computing center of excellence and create more jobs in the process.
The computer technology company will receive $8 million in Enterprise Zone tax credits over the next five years under an incentive package approved by Governor Tony Evers and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) board of directors. Under the plan approved the Chippewa Falls location would be designated as the Enterprise Zone (EZ) and continue retaining its current workforce of almost 500 high-paying jobs in Chippewa County.
The company plans to establish the Chippewa Falls site and invest millions in improvements, moves that would create 30 new jobs. HPE’s renewed investment in Wisconsin solidifies that there is no better place for the Global Center of Excellence as several world-class manufacturers and technology innovators exist in the Midwest.
HPE acquired Chippewa Falls-based Cray Inc., in 2019 as a leader in high performance computing. As a result of this acquisition HPE now has 486 full-time employees, along with about 200 contingent workers at multiple sites in Chippewa Falls. The average wage for these full-time workers is $78,000, well above the median income of $46,900 in the community. The move builds upon Chippewa Falls’ history in the development of supercomputers and high-performance computing technology as the former home of Cray and a production facility for Silicon Graphics Inc.
Cray has had a tremendous and lengthy history here in the Chippewa Valley and with HPE’s purchase it further solidified Chippewa County as the place for super computer manufacturing! HPE’s Global Center of Excellence is an outstanding opportunity for top talent to relocate to Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin and experience the advantages of working for HPE in the rapidly growing field of supercomputing. “Cray and Chippewa County has always been known for their role in the industry and now HPE is taking it to the next level providing an incredible opportunity for growth and good paying jobs for our residents here in the Chippewa Valley,” noted Charlie Walker, President/CEO of Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation (CCEDC). “CCEDC has always had a valuable relationship with both companies, both the CCEDC, City of Chippewa Falls, and Chippewa County were fortunate to assist HPE in their expansion and thank Governor Evers and WEDC in there leadership in the project. HPE has a huge positive economic impact not only Chippewa Falls but the entire state of Wisconsin.”
HPE’s supply chain also has a statewide economic impact. Xcel Energy is a key partner to HPE with its strong local utility operations in western Wisconsin, and their reliability is important to HPE’s success. HPE continues to work with Xcel Energy to ensure energy costs at the Chippewa Falls facility will be competitive into the future to power the next generation of exascale supercomputers and is working with Xcel on an economic development rate that will be filed with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin later this spring.