An Aussie-made Chromebook? Adelaide-based PC builder Allied inks major deal to produce Google's laptops locally

A display of three different-sized Google Chromebooks
(Image credit: Allied Corporation / Google)

Allied Corporation has announced it will become the first Australian-based company to manufacture and sell Google's own Chromebooks, and currently just the 13th in the world. The announcement delivers a welcome boost for Australia's tech manufacturing sector and is a major win for the Adelaide PC maker.

South Australian Premier Peter Malinauskas hailed the deal, calling it a "big deal" for the state of South Australia. “The fact that Google – one of the world’s biggest companies – wants to use South Australia as its base for manufacturing in Australia and New Zealand is a huge vote of confidence in our great state.” Malinauskas said.

“Chromebooks are the preferred device in education globally and we have long been pioneers in working with local partners to bring best-in-class affordable technology to classrooms,” Colin Marson, Director of Google for Education JAPAC, is quoted as saying by news website Glam Adelaide.

“With the support of the South Australian Government, we are excited to be working with South Australian manufacturer Allied to assemble Chromebooks in South Australia for the first time.”

The first phase of the deal saw Allied supply 60 Chromebooks to the South Australian Department of Education in time for the first school term. They will be field tested in classroom environments.

“It’s an exciting prospect to think there is potential for devices manufactured here in this State to become a viable option for our South Australian schools and indeed for schools across the country,” Malinauskas said.

Scaling up for Chrome

Chromebooks are affordable laptops with a Linux-based operating system and extensive cloud functionality. That makes them ideal for educational and workplace use, large-scale deployments, and well suited to a more closed environment.

The Chromebook deal is just one part of a major expansion plan for Allied. It's set to significantly expand its workforce and manufacturing facilities to meet new demands. Once its new facilities are up and running, Allied said it has the potential to manufacture more than 100,000 Chromebooks per year and hoped the partnership would create 500 new jobs.

Allied is planning to move beyond its space-constrained Beverely site by beginning the construction of a new facility at Lonsdale, giving it a larger manufacturing and warehousing footprint to meet current demand. But Allied's biggest investment will come to fruition when it begins work on its new headquarters and manufacturing facility at Tonsley, with construction slated to begin in 2025. When operational, the Tonsley HQ will comprise of world-class automated manufacturing and warehousing, plus the logistics, customer service, R&D and engineering functions that will be required as the company's international expansion continues.

This will deliver a welcome boost to the South Australian tech sector, and its economy overall.

During the first phase of its operations, Allied will assemble Chromebooks using kits supplied by Google, but once the Lonsdale and Tonsley facilities are up and running, Allied plans to move beyond Chromebook assembly and into manufacturing. This will open up the possibility of supplying Chromebooks to larger national and international markets.

“That’s something we’re talking to Google about as well – there’s another level of manufacturing accreditation that we would need to go through for that. But it’s a very different scale of economics and that’s a part of our longer-term plans” said Allied's VP of sales and marketing Luke Flesher.

“It’s an exciting prospect to think there is potential for devices manufactured here in this State to become a viable option for our South Australian schools and indeed for schools across the country,” Malinauskas said.

A display of three different-sized Google Chromebooks made by Allied

(Image credit: Allied Corporation / Google)

Gaming-grade pedigree

Allied is well known for its range of high-performance gaming PCs, such as the Allied Patriot-A reviewed by our sister site PC Gamer, as well as its workstation solutions and laptops. The company is already operational in Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Finland and the USA. The Netherlands, Singapore and Malaysia will be added in the first half of 2024, with other South East Asian and European countries to follow later in the year.

The company has also partnered with Compnow as a B2B reseller, which will sell Allied desktops, laptops, Chromebooks, workstations and servers into primary, secondary and tertiary education, and corporate markets.

Allied has decades of experience in PC manufacturing and assembly, having formerly run the Asia Pacific operations of Alienware and Origin PC from its existing Beverley hub. With the Chromebook announcement and its global PC manufacturing plans, Allied is in the running to become Australia's largest PC manufacturer, if not one of the region’s biggest tech companies overall.

"That means hundreds of local jobs in manufacturing, engineering, support, logistics, sales, marketing, design, creative – you name it. That’s where we’re headed.” Said Aron Saether-Jackson, Allied CEO.

For more information on Allied's locally manufactured Chromebooks, workstations, gaming PCs and laptops, visit the Allied website.

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