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Taiwan's MediaTek pairs with Indiana's Purdue University for chip design center

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Taiwan's MediaTek Inc, the world's fourth largest chip designer by revenue, plans to create a new design center in Indiana in partnership with Purdue University, the firm told Reuters. MediaTek, which makes processors for many Android phones and smart speakers, declined to say how much it would invest in its first Midwestern design hub, but said it will receive $1.4 million from the state for the center.

"Being in Indiana means we'll have access to some of the best engineering talent in the world,” said Dr. Kou-Hung Lawrence Loh, corporate senior vice president of MediaTek Inc and president of MediaTek USA Inc, in a statement the company plans to release later on Tuesday.

The company will seek to hire engineers from top schools in Indiana and nearby states that it would normally recruit to its design centers in California or the Northeast, it said.

MediaTek also said it plans to endow a professorship at Purdue to compete for federal research grants, a funding source that could see a large boost if a bill to support the chip industry gets congressional approval. The announcement will come after Taiwan's GlobalWafers said on Monday it will build a $5 billion silicon wafer plant in Sherman, Texas, as a global shortage of semiconductor chips continues to bite supply chains, forcing some automotive and electronics firms to scale back production.

(Reporting by Stephen Nellis and Alexandra Alper; Editing by Jan Harvey)

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