The tech business week: Lenovo to double Irish workforce, Duolog opens Texas offices

12 May 2014

Fiona O'Brien, Lenovo's EMEA sales operations director and country manager for Ireland

A digest of the top business technology news stories from the past week, beginning with the news tech giant Lenovo is planning to double its workforce in most countries, including Ireland.

Lenovo to double workforce in Ireland to 70 this year

After buying IBM’s x86 server business, as well as Motorola Mobility from Google, Chinese tech giant Lenovo is planning to double its workforce in most countries, including Ireland, where the headcount will grow from 35 to 70 by the end of the company’s fiscal year.

In January, Lenovo confirmed its acquisition of IBM’s x86 server business for US$2.3bn. Then came news Lenovo would be buying Motorola Mobility from Google for US$2.9bn – US$6.9bn less than what Google paid for it in 2012.

In China, Lenovo is one of the biggest electronics brands and its global ambitions to dominate the global PC industry began when the company acquired IBM’s PC division in 2005 for US$1.75bn.

Duolog expands operations with two new offices in Texas

Duolog, an Irish company involved in IP integration and assembly for complex System-on­Chip (SoC) semiconductor designs, has opened two new offices, in Austin and Dallas, Texas.

Duolog will be expanding its sales, support, and marketing teams in America, along with its US headquarters in Silicon Valley, California.

The news came during the Enterprise Ireland trade mission to Texas led by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton, TD.

Apple in late-stage talks to buy Beats Electronics for US$3.2bn

Technology giant Apple is in late-stage talks to acquire headphone and streaming player Beats Electronics for an estimated US$3.2bn.

According to The Financial Times, the deal could be concluded as early as this week.

The move will give Apple a new edge on audio, not to mention the potential for a much-needed makeover of its increasingly jaded iTunes music platform, which now competes with more agile offerings from Spotify and Pandora.

Google makes largest healthcare tech investment to date: US$130m

Internet search giant Google is making serious headway in the healthcare technology market by investing US$130m in Flatiron Health, an aggregator of data on cancer for doctors.

The Series B financing deal has been orchestrated by Google’s capital investment group Google Ventures, along with contributions from First Round Capital and the Laboratory Corporation of America.

Founded by previous Google employees Nat Turner and Zach Weinberg, Flatiron Health was launched in 2012. The company has since built data pipelines, infrastructure and software to provide cancer centres, physicians, researchers and patients with the insight they need to make informed decisions.

Chinese cloud and e-commerce giant Alibaba chases the biggest tech IPO of all time

Chinese e-commerce titan Alibaba has filed for an IPO that will value the company at up to US$200bn. The company is looking to sell a 12pc stake, placing the offering at around US$20bn.

The IPO will top the US$19.6bn offering by Visa Inc in 2008. This will make it the largest IPO in US business history.

Alibaba hasn’t yet decided whether it will list on the New York Stock Exchange or the more tech-heavy NASDAQ exchange.

Samsung replaces its head of mobile design

The head of Samsung Electronics’ mobile design team has left his job amid a less than enthusiastic response to the company’s latest smartphone, the Galaxy S5.

Samsung Electronics will replace Chang Dong-hoon, who offered to resign recently, with Lee Min-hyouk, vice-president for mobile design, Reuters reported a Samsung spokeswoman as having said.

Chang will continue to lead Samsung’s design centre, which oversees the company’s overall design strategy.

Stay informed – get daily updates on the latest happenings in technology directly to your inbox