Huawei buys Centre for Integrated Photonics for UK R&D centre

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The East of England Development Agency's (EEDA) Centre for Integrated Photonics (CIP) has been sold to Chinese information technology firm Huawei.

The CIP develops photonic hybrid integrated circuits and opto-electronic modules. Huawei is to build its UK research and development centre around the CIP, which is based in Ipswich.

CIP was purchased from its American owners in 2003 by the EEDA to save the Centre from closure. EEDA is the regional development agency covering the East of England. It has worked  across the six counties of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk.

Professor Will Pope is chairman of EEDA. He said: ‘EEDA’s mission was to ensure that a key UK technology company was not lost from the high tech business base of the East of England.’ Pope added that the sale to Huawei followed a competitive tendering process and that the taxpayer got a positive return on the 2003 purchase of CIP. Details of the sale to Hauwei have not been disclosed.

The coalition government has announced that EEDA along with the other RDAs in England and Wales will close by March 2012.