Apple is planning to open a new campus and employ an additional 20,000 people as part of a five year, $30bn investment in the US – and will make a one-off tax payment of around $38bn on its overseas cash.
It is one of the largest corporate spending plans announced since the passage of a tax cut signed by President Donald Trump.
The company has been under pressure to invest in the US since the 2016 presidential campaign, when Trump targeted it for making products in Asian factories, reports Reuters.
While Apple has announced no plans to change that practice and experts say it would be economically impractical to make iPhones in the United States, the company has begun to emphasise its US economic impact, from developers who sell software on its App Store to the tens of billions of dollars per year it spends with US suppliers.
Apple estimates it will spend $350bn in the US over the next five years. About a third will be on data centres to house its iCloud, App Store and Apple Music services, a sign of the rising importance of subscription services to a company known for its hardware.
Separately, the company told its employees around the world that they would each receive a bonus of $2,500-worth of shares.
The announced tax payment was roughly in line with expectations; the new legislation requires companies to pay a one-time tax on foreign-held earnings whether they intend to bring them back to the United States or not.
James Cordwell, of Atlantic Equities, said Apple’s investment plan could make it easier for the company to give more cash to shareholders. “Being seen to just hand the cash back to shareholders could spark some political sensitivities,” and the spending announcement could be part of Apple’s efforts to manage this issue, Cordwell said.
Apple also said it would boost its advanced manufacturing fund, which it uses to provide capital and support to suppliers such as Finisar and Corning, from $1bn to $5bn. Apple said it plans to spend $55bn with US-based suppliers in 2018, up from $50bn last year.