Closed computer chip factory sells for $6.3 million

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — A long-shuttered computer chip factory in Eugene has sold at auction for $6.3 million, but it’s not clear what the new owner plans to do with the site.

Hynix spent $1.5 billion to build and equip the 1.2-million-square-foot factory, which opened in 1998. It closed in 2008 during a downturn in the memory chip market. The closure left 1,400 people out of work, one of the biggest mass layoffs in Oregon history, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported.

The plant sold twice since, for $31 million and $13.4 million, but previous buyers abandoned plans to revive manufacturing on the site. The property went up for auction again last week.

The new owner is an Ohio digital sign company called Stratacache.

“We are in a dialogue with several different economic agencies throughout Oregon about our plans for this,” said Andrea Poley, Stratacache’s manager of global communications.

She said the coronavirus outbreak has slowed those conversations but said “we do have an outlook and see future uses of the property.”

Economic development officials in Eugene have hoped a new owner could revive the property, either as a factory with new manufacturing jobs or perhaps as a data center.