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US data center networking vendor NetApp is planning to build a US$75m research-and-development data center in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park (RTP), home to many other companies’ data centers, including IBM’s, Cisco’s and another NetApp facility.

NetApp plans to build a private-cloud environment inside the future data center its engineering labs around the world will be able to access virtually and use. The company will also use it as a showcase for dynamic and energy efficient data centers and cloud environments for potential customers.

Denise Cox, senior VP of global support at NetApp, said the company had had a long presence at RTP and the new project was building on its existing relationship with the local community and the state.

“NetApp takes pride in attracting and retaining the industry’s best people and our expansion in RTP will enable us to continue to help our customers achieve business success. Our company culture of living our values and embracing strong principles while treating employees as our greatest asset is at the core of why we are widely considered a best place to work.”

The R&D facility is expected to create 460 new jobs over four years.

NetApp received a grant from the state’s Job Development Investment Fund to assist in financing the build. Size of the grant will equal to 65% of the personal-income taxes paid by the new employees the company promises to hire as a result of the project for up to 10 years.

There are specific performance targets NetApp has to meet each year to receive the grant money. The grant can potentially yield up to about $12m over its 10-year period.