Apple has finally confirmed that it has purchased Israeli flash-memory drive producer Anobit, some four weeks after reports of the deal first emerged, and even after Israel’s Prime Minister welcomed the company to the country on Twitter.
Company spokesman Steve Dowling confirmed that the firm had been bought by Apple, however he declined to elaborate on the strategy behind the deal or how much it was valued at, telling Bloomberg:
Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.
Anobit, which is rumoured to have cost as much as $500 million, already produces key parts for the iPhone and iPad and buying the company will strengthen the availability of these component for Apple. According to Bloomberg, Apple is the world’s largest buyer of NAND flash (having been responsible for almost one quarter within the last quarter), and this deal will lessen its dependency on third parties for the parts.
The acquisition may just be the start of Apple’s plans to lay roots in Israeli. As we revealed, it has hired Aharon Aharon, a high profile figure in the Israeli tech scene, as it looks to build it presence in the country. Aharon has strong tech background having founded Camero, an RF-based imaging system company in 2004, and worked for Zoran, Discretix and IBM.
Apple is reported to have employed Aharon to help it open a semiconductor development center in Israel next year, and he spent several months at Apple headquarters in Cupertino last year in relation to the project.
Apple is yet to confirm exactly what its plans are in Israel, but it looks to be placing significant emphasis on the country.