Just months after setting up a big Silicon Valley outpost, Dell is preparing to expand its initial presence in the South Bay by adding hundreds more workers.

The expansion could push Dell to 850 employees in Santa Clara.

The technology firm now has 250 workers in the first building it leased on Great America Parkway just south of Highway 237. Dell's expansion to a second adjacent -- and larger -- building would enable it to add an additional 600 employees at its Silicon Valley hub.

"We are reaching capacity in the first building, maybe a little quicker than we expected," said Jess Blackburn, a spokesman for Texas-based Dell. "We are growing at a good pace, but at an orderly pace."

Dell started out by occupying an 87,000-square-foot building near the Santa Clara Municipal Golf Course. The second building Dell will move into is 154,000 square feet.

"We are here in Silicon Valley for a reason," Blackburn said. "This area has a rich talent pool. This is the only place in the country where you can find this concentration of people with the technology skills that we need."

Dell expects to move into two of the floors of the adjacent building by June.


Advertisement

A host of big-name tech companies have been grabbing space in the South Bay over the past several months. Google (GOOG), Facebook, Apple (AAPL), Motorola Mobility, Microsoft, Synopsys, Flextronics and Polycom are among them.

In a number of cases, the leases that tech companies are signing are quickly followed by other deals in the same buildings.

"Dell's expansion dovetails with what's going on in the market," said Jeff Houston, a senior vice president with CB Richard Ellis, a commercial realty firm. "They take space and then they need more right after that."

Eventually, Dell expects to have 1,500 employees in Santa Clara. To accommodate that level of growth, the company is looking at a third building in the same complex as the first two.

"There's a scramble for specialized talent," said Scott Daugherty, a broker with Colliers International. "If you need to hire knowledge workers, you have to fish where the fish are."

For Dell, the Silicon Valley hub is a springboard for the company to evolve beyond its traditional roots as a computer manufacturer. The company is eyeing a push into additional technologies such as storage, networking and cloud computing.

"The move to Silicon Valley has been a good one," Blackburn said.

Contact George Avalos at 925-977-8477. Follow him at Twitter.com/george_avalos.

154,000
Square footage of Dell's second Santa Clara building.
1,500
Number of employees Dell is planning to have working in Santa Clara.