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Samsung stakes a claim in Silicon Valley

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Samsung’s been in the headlines this year, in part, because of its epic clash with Apple. The two have been duking it out for the number one spot in smart phones. 

But despite the fact that Samsung builds the “Galaxy,” one of the world’s most popular smartphones, not a lot is known about the company in Silicon Valley. That’s because most of its brain power — its research and development — is based in its homeland Korea.

The comany hopes to change that. It’s building a 1.1 milion square foot “R&D Center” and dedicating $100 million to fund emerging technologies. 

“Being in Silicon Valley is really critical because this is the epicenter of disruptive forces,” said Young Sohn, the company’s chief strategy officer. 

Silicon Valley attracts tech talent from around the world and Sohn says tapping into that, will determine the company’s success.

Mark Cannice, a professor of entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of San Francisco, thinks Samsung is making a smart move by starting a venture capital fund in the Valley. 

“If you think about fashion New York comes to mind, if you think about movies, Hollywood of course and if you think about innovation, you think about Silicon Valley,” says Cannice.

He adds that Samsung is making a statement. That despite its varied businesses — it builds everything from ships to office buildings — it plans to be a leader in technology.

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