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Apple paid a premium to relocate family for NC data center

post #1 of 78
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Apple paid as much as $1.7 million for one acre of land near its $1 billion North Carolina data center, which is nearing completion.

County records obtained by Bloomberg show that Apple purchased Donnie and Kathy Fulbright's one-acre property near Maiden, N.C., for $1.7 million. The Fulbrights had purchased the land for $6,000 and lived there for over 30 years. By comparison, the initial purchase of the land for the data center may have cost as little as $35,000 an acre.

It took several offers from Apple for the Fulbrights to consider moving. "They told us to put a price on it and we did," Kathy Fulbright told Bloomberg. Using the funds from the sale, the Fulbrights purchased a 49-acre piece of land with a 4,200-square-foot-house and a Jacuzzi, the report noted.

Apple's continued success drives increased need for such a large data center. Apples growth has been pretty dramatic and they have probably exceeded their capacity, said David Cappuccio chief of research at Gartner. Between iTunes and the video store they are going to have, youre talking about massive amounts of data and millions of people trying to access that at the same time.

During an earnings call in July, Apple chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer told investors that the data center is "on schedule" and that Apple expects "to complete it by the end of the calendar year, and begin to use it." The Cupertino, Calif., company announced the project in June 2009.

Though the data center is widely viewed as the foundation for Apple's expansion into streaming video and other media, Gartner's Cappucio believes the center may also be used for as-yet-unannounced initiatives, such as social networking and web search, according to the Bloomberg report.

Codenamed 'Project Dolphin' by government officials, the $1 billion data center is expected to not only directly provide jobs for 50 people, but also generate 250 auxiliary jobs and create as many as 3,000 peripheral jobs for the local area.

The conditions for Apple's tax breaks included a stipulation that Apple build the center in an "economically-distressed area." Catawba County, where the complex is located, had an unemployment rate of 12.3 percent in August, compared with a state unemployment rate of 9.7 percent.

Bloomberg reported that Apple had received a sizable 50 percent reduction in real property taxes, and an 85 percent reduction in individual property taxes, according to the minutes of a meeting between the Catawba County Board of Commissioners and the Maiden Town Council. In return, Apple committed to spending at least $1 billion over the course of the ten year agreement and maintaining the expected 50 full time jobs at the center.
post #2 of 78
Wouldn't it be interesting if they used Linux to run their servers. Would they ever tell?
post #3 of 78
1.7 million? I guess living there for over thirty years really did paid off.
post #4 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post

Wouldn't it be interesting if they used Linux to run their servers. Would they ever tell?

I would not be surprised if they have a few Linux and even more Windows servers, but I believe most of their servers are Apple Xserves from data center pictures that I have seen in the past. Google uses Linux heavily.

Apple sells very nice quad core and 8 core 1U Xserve servers, not to mention Mac Mini servers running OS X. Power efficiency will be important in such a large data center.
http://store.apple.com/us/browse/hom...co=MTY3ODQ5OTY

Imagine the expensive Cisco Network equipment in that data center. They make $1.7 million look like pocket change.
http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/...632/index.html
post #5 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post

Wouldn't it be interesting if they used Linux to run their servers. Would they ever tell?

There's not a lot of point to using Linux if you are willing to buy Apple hardware. I can only assume that Apple is willing to buy its own hardware.
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post #6 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splinemodel View Post

There's not a lot of point to using Linux if you are willing to buy Apple hardware. I can only assume that Apple is willing to buy its own hardware.

Why buy your own gear? Fill the place with your own gear, take the hit for lost sales, and use the datacentre to shut those idiots who say Macs can't do business up.

That's what I'd do. What better sales pitch could you have than a multi-million dollar datacentre that pushes data around as though it was an air hockey puck over datacentres that run Windows that push data around like it's a brick on a rubber mat?
post #7 of 78
While I'm sure the family is happy, 1.7 is small change.
post #8 of 78
Look here and it's a hodge-podge of stuff from Apple, IBM, Sun, Red Hat Linux, Oracle, etc.

http://jobs.apple.com/index.ajs?BID=...&CurrentPage=4

Apple's heavily into SAP stuff as well to run their own operations if you look at other IT job openings in Cupertino.

Come on, Apple will soon be a $100 billion operation in annual sales. You think they'll use Xserve and QuickBooks to run their operations?
post #9 of 78
.

"Hey Gomer, did you hear Donnie and Kathy in Maiden got $1,700,000 for their land from them Apple folks"

"Gaww-lee Goober, no"

"Yea, and it was only one acre"

"THAT much for ONE acre?"

"Yea, is what Floyd told me"

"Shazaam, maybe we should start growing apples"

.

post #10 of 78
It would be interesting to know how the back haul data pipes are being routed etc. I presume it would have to be massive? Who would they route through etc?

On a separate off topic note, not a big fan of corporations negotiating individual tax breaks, let each area/community compete on it's basic tax rates(revise the basic rates if a company were to move in) doesn't seem fair to the existing companies in the area, economics for the locals is not a sure thing, I know...not the real world.
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post #11 of 78
How ridiculous. They should have let them stay. I'm sure it would be nice to live in the middle of the parking lot and then be left with a worthless piece of land.
post #12 of 78
The exact same thing happened in Sarasota, FL when the Ritz Carlton was built. Equally large amount for a small house too close to their footprint. This sort of thing happens all the time.
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post #13 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post

It would be interesting to know how the back haul data pipes are being routed etc. I presume it would have to be massive? Who would they route through etc?

On a separate off topic note, not a big fan of corporations negotiating individual tax breaks, let each area/community compete on it's basic tax rates(revise the basic rates if a company were to move in) doesn't seem fair to the existing companies in the area, economics for the locals is not a sure thing, I know...not the real world.

KInd of of topic ... but it is an interesting twist on 'fair trade' I guess but that seems to be an oxymoron in this world. From my observations it seems a common practice. Several States run ads on TV advertising they do this. In fact, whole countries do this, I seem to recall Japan took on and decimated the UK's ship building through similar methods decades ago. Actually it would not be a bad idea if the US managed to bring back manufacturing to the US by similar methods since the jobs only left due to this exact thing in reverse, although labor costs were also key there ....
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Been using Apples since 1978 and Macs since 1984
Long on AAPL so biased. Strong advocate for separation of technology and politics on AI.
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Been using Apples since 1978 and Macs since 1984
Long on AAPL so biased. Strong advocate for separation of technology and politics on AI.
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post #14 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by BC Kelly View Post

.

"Hey Gomer, did you hear Donnie and Kathy in Maiden got $1,700,000 for their land from them Apple folks"

"Gaww-lee Goober, no"

"Yea, and it was only one acre"

"THAT much for ONE acre?"

"Yea, is what Floyd told me"

"Shazaam, maybe we should start growing apples"

.




Barney Fife: "1.7 mil for one acre?! One!!! We've got to nip it! NIP IT IN THE BUD!!!"

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post #15 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

KInd of of topic ... but it is an interesting twist on 'fair trade' I guess but that seems to be an oxymoron in this world. From my observations it seems a common practice. Several States run ads on TV advertising they do this. In fact, whole countries do this, I seem to recall Japan took on and decimated the UK's ship building through similar methods decades ago. Actually it would not be a bad idea if the US managed to bring back manufacturing to the US by similar methods since the jobs only left due to this exact thing in reverse, although labor costs were also key there ....

Actually it would be a bad thing. US companies make more money from things other than manufacturing.
post #16 of 78
A triumph for Apple to own this land and build a factory in the US. I am glad people in our own country will start working there and NC economy will start to prosper once again. I am sick of Made in China and other parts of the world except our own country.Hopefully Apple will start to manufacturer computers there also and not made in China and boost our economy instead of theirs.
post #17 of 78
50 billion in the bank and they negotiate a reduction in property taxes and income taxes. Greed is good!
post #18 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by benice View Post

Actually it would be a bad thing. US companies make more money from things other than manufacturing.

They may make more money, but never enough to replace the value of producing something real. Anyway, do we really need more lobbyists? Even if they make a lot of money for themselves and the politicians they buy off?
post #19 of 78
No, not greed. Just shareholder value maximization, my friend.
post #20 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

No, not greed. Just shareholder value maximization, my friend.

So what you are saying is if Apple had agreed to pay the standard tax rate that the stock of Apple would have been reduced in value? Say from $278 a share to 275 a share. Meaning the increase in value of Apple stock since January 2009 would only have been 335% instead of 338%. Good point, I don't know what I was thinking expecting such a sacrifice by the shareholders.
post #21 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleSauce007 View Post

I would not be surprised if they have a few Linux and even more Windows servers, but I believe most of their servers are Apple Xserves from data center pictures that I have seen in the past. ...

It's been noted in the pas that Apple uses Linux in some of it's servers. They do use some Windows servers as well but not "more" by any means. Apple uses what works, and what is best for a given situation. They use their own gear, but if there is a better product for a particular situation they use that. This means that they only use Windows servers very minimally, Linux fairly often, and OS-X gear for the rest. (last I heard).
post #22 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splinemodel View Post

There's not a lot of point to using Linux if you are willing to buy Apple hardware. I can only assume that Apple is willing to buy its own hardware.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post

Why buy your own gear? Fill the place with your own gear, take the hit for lost sales, and use the datacentre to shut those idiots who say Macs can't do business up.

That's what I'd do. What better sales pitch could you have than a multi-million dollar datacentre that pushes data around as though it was an air hockey puck over datacentres that run Windows that push data around like it's a brick on a rubber mat?

I think you took his comment a little too literally.

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post #23 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by kent909 View Post

50 billion in the bank and they negotiate a reduction in property taxes and income taxes. Greed is good!

Of course, Apple could have taken them to court, had the state or county declare "eminent domain" and taken the property... in which case the owners would have gotten maybe $170,000 for it???

Seems like Apple realized they could treat those folks better than the government would/could.
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post #24 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by gerald apple View Post

A triumph for Apple to own this land and build a factory in the US. I am glad people in our own country will start working there and NC economy will start to prosper once again. I am sick of Made in China and other parts of the world except our own country.Hopefully Apple will start to manufacturer computers there also and not made in China and boost our economy instead of theirs.

A triumph for Apple, yes - they have exempted themselves from a large part of the taxation system, thus increasing their profit at the expense of the US citizen.

You don't buy anything from China, do you?
post #25 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post

Why buy your own gear? Fill the place with your own gear, take the hit for lost sales, and use the datacentre to shut those idiots who say Macs can't do business up.

The X-serve isn't what the experts call a cloud-scale machine. Most operators go for a large number of low power, expendable servers not just because they are cheaper, but because all the bells and whistles go to waste. Why use hot swap drives when your application just switches users off a failing node.

It amazed me how much was held together with Velcro in one particular facility; faster to replace or repair a machine when you don't have any screws to deal with...

The reason Macs aren't well suited from a software side is that management tools don't scale that well for 10,000 nodes. The server OS is little more than pretty GUI tools for a unix back-end. Working with raw config files breaks the GUI, so why have it in the first place.

Doesn't mean there is anything wrong with the hardware, just not the right tool for this job.
post #26 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfSomewhereHot View Post

Of course, Apple could have taken them to court, had the state or county declare "eminent domain" and taken the property... in which case the owners would have gotten maybe $170,000 for it???

Seems like Apple realized they could treat those folks better than the government would/could.

Apple might have also secured some lifetime customers and positive word of mouth.
post #27 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by gerald apple View Post

A triumph for Apple to own this land and build a factory in the US. I am glad people in our own country will start working there and NC economy will start to prosper once again. I am sick of Made in China and other parts of the world except our own country.Hopefully Apple will start to manufacturer computers there also and not made in China and boost our economy instead of theirs.

it's not a factory.
post #28 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by kent909 View Post

Good point, I don't know what I was thinking expecting such a sacrifice by the shareholders.

Dear shareholders: We are asking you to sacrifice a wee bit of your mind-boggling return on AAPL so that NC can spend it on stuff in which you have neither control nor interest. Or, we'll just locate our data center in one of the many more places more eager to provide jobs for a few thousand people and tax revenue forever.

China, perhaps. I hear they're interested.

My willingness to "sacrifice" even more than I have already been compelled to "sacrifice" is zero. As in, zero.

Let me be clear: zero.
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post #29 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by kent909 View Post

50 billion in the bank and they negotiate a reduction in property taxes and income taxes. Greed is good!

when you're pumping a billion dollar investment into an area, you're going to get a tax break.
post #30 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwatson View Post

A triumph for Apple, yes - they have exempted themselves from a large part of the taxation system, thus increasing their profit at the expense of the US citizen.?

EVERY company going into a remote location has those deals. Its kind of the point of going there. Its a trade off a region do to attract new jobs in the area which will results in more houses which means more TAX. The value of real-estate in the area will also rise which, again, means more tax. For crying out loud...

A new trend that I see happening here in Canada is remote location outsourcing. Instead of going to India, IT are starting to open divisions a few 100 miles from big cities, where cost of life is reduce and salary are cheaper. Imo this a very good way to keep jobs inside your own country.
post #31 of 78
What a stroke of luck. Nice retirement for those folks!
post #32 of 78
wow... $142,100 router...
post #33 of 78
It took several offers from Apple for the Fulbrights to consider moving. "They told us to put a price on it and we did," Kathy Fulbright told Bloomberg. Using the funds from the sale, the Fulbrights purchased a 49-acre piece of land with a 4,200-square-foot-house and a Jacuzzi, the report noted.


so they spent most of it on a ridiculous house? another american idiot that can't manage money.
post #34 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by john galt View Post

Dear shareholders: We are asking you to sacrifice a wee bit of your mind-boggling return on AAPL so that NC can spend it on stuff in which you have neither control nor interest. Or, we'll just locate our data center in one of the many more places more eager to provide jobs for a few thousand people and tax revenue forever.

China, perhaps. I hear they're interested.

My willingness to "sacrifice" even more than I have already been compelled to "sacrifice" is zero. As in, zero.

Let me be clear: zero.


yes, move it all to china. all IP should be in the hands of the chinese.
post #35 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by aimbdd View Post

wow... $142,100 router...

Sad fact is, usually the service agreements and such really zap the wallet. The hardware is not the most expensive thing when purchasing wire-speed equipment.
post #36 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

The exact same thing happened in Sarasota, FL when the Ritz Carlton was built. Equally large amount for a small house too close to their footprint. This sort of thing happens all the time.

Major companies usually try to keep their identities secret as land-buyers so that they don't end up like this, hugely overpaying one holdout owner. In this case, the cat was out of the bag. This rumor ended up costing Apple something, though in fairness we don't how much the land was actually worth.
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post #37 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by kent909 View Post

50 billion in the bank and they negotiate a reduction in property taxes and income taxes. Greed is good!

I seriously doubt Apple did much negotiating. These are incentives put out by the local council to help bring companies in. This happens all the time to help lure people into an area to build it up.

Also, the contracts to purchase the land were probably drawn up a long time ago (3+ years) as it takes time to design a building of this scale. You can't draw up plans for a building until you know the land it's going to sit on. At that time Apple didn't have "50 billion in the bank".
Disclaimer: The things I say are merely my own personal opinion and may or may not be based on facts. At certain points in any discussion, sarcasm may ensue.
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Disclaimer: The things I say are merely my own personal opinion and may or may not be based on facts. At certain points in any discussion, sarcasm may ensue.
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post #38 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by gerald apple View Post

A triumph for Apple to own this land and build a factory in the US. I am glad people in our own country will start working there and NC economy will start to prosper once again. I am sick of Made in China and other parts of the world except our own country.Hopefully Apple will start to manufacturer computers there also and not made in China and boost our economy instead of theirs.

It's certainly a nice thought, but who is able to afford computers built in US? Well for one maybe steve himself, but who else?
post #39 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post

Wouldn't it be interesting if they used Linux to run their servers. Would they ever tell?

Not really. They'll use whatever is required. Data centers don't need a lot horsepower, they are more about storage capacity and bandwidth.

However, I'd bet they use Xserves whenever and where ever possible.
Disclaimer: The things I say are merely my own personal opinion and may or may not be based on facts. At certain points in any discussion, sarcasm may ensue.
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post #40 of 78
Good for them.
The story of Walt Disney's acquisition of the properties for DisneyWorld in Florida are amazing.
You think Apple is secretive, Disney was able to keep purchase of what seems like half of florida secret until just before the announcement in order to keep everyone from hiking their prices.

Glad a family made out. Chump change for Apple.;
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