The Everett Herald has reported that Everett based Access Laser was bought earlier this month by the German high-tech tool manufacturer, Trumpf. Access Laser’s extreme ultra violet lasers, used in the manufacturing of semiconductors and microprocessors, caught the attention of Trumpf, which is heavily involved in laser tool manufacturing.
Trumpf’s chief technology officer, Peter Leibinger praised the Everett based company calling them, “a highly innovative laser company.” Access Laser employs 48 individuals in Everett and a little over a dozen more in Shenzhen, China, and demonstrates the global interest that innovative, local companies in the Greater Seattle region have spurred recently.
A small Seattle based company, Hiya has also seen foreign investment from Europe in recent months. Hiya, run by the former White Pages owner, Alex Algard, received $18 million in series A funding this year driven primarily by London based Balderton Capital. The company, which already has locations in Budapest and London, stated that the funding will be used to further develop its global reach and data analytics capabilities. Algard told Forbes in an October interview that “If Hiya is going to become a global service, we have to think internationally.” With plans to double their workforce by 2018, Hiya is looking to grow its already 40 employee strong Seattle location.
Germany and the U.K., home to Trumpf and Balderton Capital respectively, are consistent investors in Washington State industries, contributing 20% of total FDI in the state as of 2017 according to SelectUSA, the branch of the US government that handles FDI. These kinds of investments of foreign capital into advanced manufacturing and software are testament to Washington State’s international competitive presence and ingenuity in these industry sectors.