Spacelabs Healthcare to leave Issaquah for Snoqualmie

October 2, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

Issaquah-based medical device manufacturer Spacelabs Healthcare plans to relocate to Snoqualmie, the company’s CEO announced Sept. 17.

Spacelabs’ parent company, OSI Systems Inc., paid $14 million for a 176,000-square-foot building in the Snoqualmie Ridge Business Park. Spacelabs should complete the move east by next spring.

In Issaquah, Spacelabs leases space in a corporate office park wedged between East Lake Sammamish Parkway and Lake Sammamish State Park.

Issaquah Economic Development Director Keith Niven said Spacelabs ranks among the largest employers in the city.

“It’s difficult for any community to lose professional jobs and I think the city would have liked to have kept Spacelabs here,” he said. “In the scheme of things, it’s like you lose Spacelabs but you gain SanMar, but we’re always trying to add to the professional jobs that are available in town.”

The apparel company SanMar relocated about 400 jobs to Issaquah from Preston last year.

OSI Systems — based in Hawthorne, Calif. — purchased Spacelabs for about $50 million in 2004.

“We continue to seek opportunities to enhance our facilities while simultaneously reducing our operating expenses in a sustainable manner,” Deepak Chopra, OSI Systems CEO, said in a statement. “The new headquarters in Snoqualmie provides a significant upgrade from our current headquarters and at a lower cost.”

(OSI Systems CEO Chopra is not the same person as the noted physician and writer Deepak Chopra.)

Kevin Dwyer, Snoqualmie Valley Chamber of Commerce CEO, said the Spacelabs addition is a coup for the area.

“They have 400 jobs, and a lot of these jobs are certainly family wage and above,” he said. “You’ve got the CEO down to the janitor.”

The influx of employees related to Spacelabs, he added, could benefit other businesses nearby, such as restaurants, and add some international cachet to Snoqualmie.

“It puts Snoqualmie on the map in terms of recruiting technology-related companies,” Dwyer said. “We’re absolutely looking at this as a momentum-builder as we go forward trying to identify other companies that might have an interest.”

Spacelabs’ building in Snoqualmie once housed a manufacturing plant for Philips Oral Healthcare. The electronics giant manufactured the Sonicare toothbrush in the space, before Philips relocated the jobs to China in 2009.

Spacelabs is the latest tenant to commit to the Snoqualmie Ridge Business Park.

Redmond-based Motion Water Sports is building a facility in the Snoqualmie Ridge Business Park and plans to consolidate some operations from throughout the Puget Sound region.

The other addition to the complex is a government permitting center, as King County prepares to relocate the Department of Permitting and Environmental Review — formerly the Department of Development and Environmental Services — from Renton to Snoqualmie Ridge. That move is expected to occur by late October.

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