The company that literally started Silicon Valley is moving to Texas
HOUSTON, Texas — Hewlett-Packard traces its origins to 1938, when Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard rented a garage in Palo Alto, California. Now, HP Enterprises, a descendant of the pioneering company, is moving to Texas.
The company announced its move Tuesday. Houston is currently Hewlett-Packard Enterprises’ largest U.S. employment hub, and the company is constructing a new campus in the city. HPE will also consolidate a number of its Bay Area sites to its San Jose campus. The move won’t result in any layoffs.
HPE’s move to Texas is hardly a new concept in the tech world. It’s the largest — but just the latest — tech company to make the trip south: SignEasy, QuestionPro and DZS (formerly known as Dasan Zhone Solutions) also moved from California to Texas.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk threatened in May to move the company’s headquarters from Fremont, California, which is just across the bay from Palo Alto, to Texas or Nevada, because of his displeasure with California’s stay-at-home orders. While he did not follow through with that, the company did announce in July that it would build its new auto plant in a suburb of Austin.
It also comes during the pandemic, a time when companies across all industries are rethinking office space and location and shifting toward work-from-home culture.
Dell’s headquarters is in Round Rock, Texas, near Austin, and many other tech companies are considering moving to Texas for tax reasons. In fact, a patch of Austin has been nicknamed “Silicon Hills” because of its cluster of tech companies in the metro Austin area.
HP’s success in Palo Alto kickstarted the Northern California region’s tech scene, eventually landing it the moniker “Silicon Valley.” In HP’s first year, Hewlett and Packard invented their first product: the HP Model 200A, an audio oscillator used to test sound equipment.
The company built its first computer in 1966 and the famous HP-35 in 1972 — the world’s first hand-held scientific calculator.
In 2015, the company split into HPE and hardware maker HP Inc., which is not heading to Texas.
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