Business Insight: A Look at Cree

By Durham Chamber of Commerce / Published 09.02.20
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Cree is proud of its North Carolina roots – the company started in a lab at NC State University more than 30 years ago – and calls Durham home to its global headquarters. Since its inception, the company has been innovating and delivering technology solutions that allow customers and society to do more with less. As the global leader in silicon carbide technology, the company’s Wolfspeed technology is leading the transformation from silicon to silicon carbide as it shapes the future of semiconductor markets: helping facilitate the transition to electric vehicles, the move to faster 5G networks, the evolution of renewable energy and energy storage, and the advancement of industrial applications.

 

In September 2019, as part of the company’s $1 billion investment to expand its silicon carbide capacity, Cree announced construction of the world’s largest silicon carbide device manufacturing facility in New York and the expansion of the company’s Durham campus to build a mega-materials factory establishing a silicon carbide corridor on the east coast. This capacity expansion enables the company to continue to lead the industry transition from silicon to silicon carbide to meet the increasing demand for the company’s groundbreaking Wolfspeed technology.

 

In both North Carolina and New York, Cree is partnering with local community and four-year colleges to develop training and internship programs to prepare individuals for the high-tech, advanced manufacturing employment and long-term growth opportunities that the company’s expansion plan presents. This aligns with the company’s commitment to not only fueling long-term growth opportunities for its employees through an internal mobility practice that combines ongoing workforce development, leadership training, education assistance and career path planning, but also supporting the growth and development of students interested in STEM careers. For those interested in joining the Cree team, open job positions for all locations can be found on the company’s career page.

 

As a company with values rooted in respect, benevolence, inclusivity and helping those it works with and serves, Cree is committed to maintaining a culture of diversity, equity and inclusion encompassing all employee differences and identities. It is building an environment where inclusivity is real and active rather than theoretical and static. The team also firmly believes that every individual should have a home, enough to eat and an opportunity to excel. Whether through corporate events and sponsorships or employee-led initiatives, Cree stands behind its values by doing the right thing at work and in its local communities. The company’s STEM-focused community engagement activity includes support of STEM events with local organizations such as NC Science Olympiad, STEM in the Park and the Kramden Institute. Cree also partners with local food banks and Habitat for Humanity of Durham on an ongoing basis. Most recently in response to the pandemic, the company donated to The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina in addition to Habitat for Humanity of Durham’s emergency fund that was used to give homeowners a three-month reprieve on their mortgage payments. Cree also donated 30,000 KN95 safety masks to Duke University Health System.

 

Cree’s future is bright and the company is excited for its continued growth as it looks to make a positive impact locally as well as across the globe.