IBMers who work with Big Blue’s x86 business in the Triangle won’t have a much longer commute to make this week – but they will begin working for a new company.
“Immediately,” said Lenovo’s top North America exec Jay Parker about the transition timeline.
With Lenovo and IBM (NYSE: IBM) wrapping up their $2.1 billion x86 server deal, the first Big Blue workers will head to a Lenovo operated facility on Wednesday morning. While some workers and facilities will transition in coming months, a large number switch to Lenovo’s two server-group buildings and take orientation in coming days, Parker explained.
Closing IBM-Lenovo x86 deal:
- Lenovo exec: ‘FUD’ about deal is over.
- Lenovo’s CEO predicts victory in server market
- Lenovo-IBM deal closes Wednesday but no guarantees about future jobs
Lenovo has worked feverishly mover the past six months to renovate the former Sony Ericsson buildings at 8001 Development Drive in Morrisville. The buildings cover some 500,000 square feet.
“It looks like a small city over there,” Parker said of the renovation. It’s so new, in fact, that he joked: “I still have to use my GPS to find it.”
But the IBMers won’t be alone. Lenovo is also transferring people from its own server business to the site.
The combined business, which Lenovo is branding as Lenovo System X (playing off IBM’s System X server name), will be run by Adalio Sanchez, the current head of IBM’s x86 group. He is already based in Triangle as are a third of the x86’s global 6,000 employees.
How many employees are directly affected by the sale is not yet clear, however.
“There are well over 1,000” Parker told WRAL TechWire in an interview Monday after the server closing was announced. He said he did not yet have a specific number.
Lenovo acknowledged when the sale was originally disclosed in January that the deal would double the number of company employees in the Triangle. The number at that time was 2,200.
“Nothing has changed,” Parker said when asked about the numbers. “We are buying the x86 business intact. That included all the systems, the technology, the research labs, all the people.”
Lenovo has already scheduled several orientation sessions for the ex-IBMers, he added.
Not everyone involved will shifted to the new space immediately, Parker noted. Last to come in a process that will take several months yet are the x86 research labs. Parker described the construction and setting up of the lab space as being more complicated than the upfitting already completed.
Lenovo also will transition IBMers to Lenovo space in other parts of the U.S., he added. “Several hundred around the country will become members of the Lenovo family.”
Lenovo operates its executive headquarters in Morrisville and its global headquarters in Beijing.