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What Foxconn could mean for Northeast Wisconsin

In this Thursday, May 27, 2010, file photo, a worker looks out through the logo at the entrance of the Foxconn complex in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)

NORTHEAST WISCONSIN (WLUK) -- You've likely heard the announcement.

"It is some of the most amazing technology in the world and we're proud to say it's going to be made in this great state of Wisconsin."

Foxconn, a Taiwanese manufacturer, makes electronics for Apple. Even though the plant won't be built in Northeast Wisconsin, Jerry Murphy thinks the area will still see benefits.

"This is an excellent thing," said Jerry Murphy.

He is the executive director of New North in Green Bay. New North describes itself as a regional marketing and economic development organization.

Its website is also a place that highlights local companies and what they can do.

"For a company like Foxconn or for any company, for that matter, who's looking for a unique range of suppliers and vendors this is a one stop shop directory," Murphy said.

While Foxconn, which is expected to be built in southeast Wisconsin, has yet to announce what supplies it needs to construct and maintain its new facility. Murphy suggests some Northeast Wisconsin companies like Plexus, an electronics design company in Neenah, might be used.

"A company like Plexus has significant capacity around circuitry," Murphy said.

In a statement Plexus says:

Plexus has been headquartered in Wisconsin since our inception over 35 years ago. Wisconsin has a great reputation for supporting high-tech industries, so it comes as no surprise that other electronics manufacturing companies would also choose to establish a presence here. Plexus’ strategy is to partner with customers who have highly-complex products in demanding regulatory environments. As a result, we do not compete directly with FoxConn and would not expect to see a significant impact to Plexus. While they will not be in close proximity to our operations, FoxConn’s presence in Wisconsin should benefit us in the long-term by increasing the talent pool to support our industry.

Production won't be limited to electronic companies.

"Think of the packaging required. And, we are strong in packaging in the state and particularly in Northeast Wisconsin. Think of the logistics requirements of that," Murphy said.

Murphy thinks Foxconn could also bring more companies to Wisconsin.

"To have Foxconn pick Wisconsin among other competitors, is really sending an affirmation of our technology capacity," Murphy said.

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