EUGENE, Ore. - A little more than a year ago, Hynix announced it was closing its doors and leaving town, taking with it more than 1,000 jobs and an annual payroll of $62 million.
It was a devastating blow to Lane County's economy. But it looks like, after a year of doubt, the semi-conductor manufacturing plant might have a buyer.
According to reports published in Business Week and The Wall Street Journal, a South Korean company plans to buy the semiconductor plant. Uni-chem, a leather manufacturer, reportedly will build solar panels at the west Eugene facility. Hynix has not yet confirmed the purchase supposedly worth $50 million.
KVAL News talked to Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy on Sunday. She said as far as she knows, nothing is finalized.
"I need more details," said Piercy. "I'm cautiously optimistic. I don't want people to get all their hopes up and then have them dashed but it looks very positive thus far... It's not a done deal yet. I think they are still in discussion."
Piercy said the company came to Eugene a few months ago to talk about the prospects for the Hynix plant. Piercy said when they left it, the company was still looking for someone to finance the purchase.
Piercy said the CEO of the company is friends with the mayor of Eugene's sister city, Jinju, South Korea. Piercy also said there have been several other offers to buy Hynix, but none have been a good match. This new deal, she added, is the closest the company has come so far.