The Ottawa Business Journal is reporting that Apple has leased a 22,000 ft space in Kanata, Ontario. Notably, the location is in close proximity to the BlackBerry QNX offices. Whether Apple is interested in attracting QNX employees for itself is not clear. It is definitely possible that the geography is coincidental. However, QNX is known to be working on autonomous driving and Apple may want to take some of this engineering talent for its own Apple Car research.
The area in question, suite 300, is currently listed as empty on the building property website.
KRP describes the property as a “full-floor office suite with executive boardroom, meeting rooms, several offices, server room, lunchroom, showers, private balconies and lab space.” The building’s director of leasing did not respond to a request for comment.
Companies often buy offices near their competition to try and attract engineers. Employees are more likely to move if they do not have to relocate. It is possible Apple is interested in QNX automotive talent, especially as it relates to self-driving cars. Apple is reportedly exploring self-driving elements for its electric car project although it is unclear to what extent autonomy will play a role in Apple’s first products. Nevertheless, it faces pressure from the rest of the industry (and Google) regarding self-driving features so stocking up on talent is probably a wise move. That being said, it is also possible that Apple has other plans for the facility.