August first will mark the end of manufacturing in the midwest for a computer company that was born here. Gateway Computing almost literally was born in a barn in 1985, with partners Ted Waitt and Mike Hammond assembling PCs in a farmhouse near Sioux City. The company with its folksy cow-spotted logo moved to North Sioux City in 1989 and quickly gained national recognition with its unconventional methods, selling computers by phone and over the internet. By the early 1990’s, nearly 6-thousand people worked in North Sioux City, and Gateway employed more than 20-thousand worldwide, finally opening its own stores. Then the boom slowed. In April, Gateway closed all 188 of its retail stores, and it’s been outsourcing more of its manufacturing for some time now. That process is expected to be complete August first. The company says it won’t close the flagship plant where 1700 people, many Iowans, still have jobs, but is not ruling out further cutbacks.
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