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Dell May Open Plant in Tennessee

April 1, 1999

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Dell Computer Corp. is considering sites in Middle Tennessee for a plant that could employ up to 10,000 workers in manufacturing, customer service and administration, a newspaper reported today.

Company representatives reportedly have spoken with officials in Davidson, Rutherford and Williamson counties, as well as in at least five other states, The Tennessean reported. The paper did not identify the states.

Dell wants to expand its U.S. operations beyond its headquarters and sole American plant in central Texas. The new plant would open with 2,000 workers and expand to 10,000, according to what Dell representatives told officials in at least two states, The Tennessean reported.

Nashville mayoral spokesman Mark Drury said Dell officials have spoken to the city’s economic development office and were looking for a site with more than 1,000 acres ``and there just wasn’t a site in Davidson County able to accommodate that.″

Officials from the state, Rutherford and Williamson counties, and the city of Franklin were tight-lipped.

``We’re aware that a high-tech firm is looking at Middle Tennessee,″ Franklin City Administrator Jay Johnson said. ``Official comment would have to come from the state of Tennessee or the company.″

Beth Fortune, Gov. Don Sundquist’s spokeswoman, declined to comment.

Dell spokesman Jerele Neeld said he knew of no expansion plans other than a new plant in Brazil and continued expansion in Austin, Texas, which is not far from the company’s Round Rock, Texas, headquarters.

Dell employs 24,000 people in 33 countries. The company designs, manufactures and customizes computer products, and bills itself as the leading computer company that sells directly to the consumer.

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