A joint venture led by Qualcomm and the Brazilian government will see the launch of a semiconductors factory producing high-complexity equipment. The consortium, which also includes semiconductor manufacturing firm ASE Group, is predicted to make a total investment of $200m in the initiative.
The technology sector in China is still not sophisticated enough to compete with the US in the global chip market, the chairman of China's top contract chipmaker said on Tuesday.
Nikkei Electronics Asia
Samsung is going to make supplemental investments into its 10nm production lines in March 2017 and construct new 7nm semiconductor facilities in 2018. Its strategy is to secure ultra-fine processing technologies faster than its competitors.
Lattice Semiconductor has moved a step closer to being acquired by an investment firm backed by China's central government, announcing Tuesday (Feb. 28) that its shareholders have approved the terms of the $1.3 billion deal.
Toshiba wants to pick the preferred bidder or bidders for a majority stake in its chip unit by the end of May and will hold the first round of bids next month, a source with knowledge of the plan said.
Toshiba is looking to raise at least JPY1 trillion (US$8.8 billion) from the sale of its memory chip business and will aim to complete the transaction by March 2018, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Toshiba may delay the sale of its prized flash-memory chip unit after the conglomerate said it would consider selling most, even all, of the marquee business, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said.
"China will find it very tough to buy US high-tech companies and difficult to leverage Chinese joint ventures or wholly-owned enterprises to access key US intellectual property," Andrew Lu wrote in a Jan. 10 report for Smartkarma. "We thus expect more senior Taiwan veterans to join China's semiconductor industry as a second wave of talent moves to China."
Samsung Electronics and SK hynix are expected to engage in the automotive semiconductor industry in earnest as the global market is expected to grow 7.1% annually by 2020.
The Korea Times
Business weekly Toyo Keizai reported that Taiwan's Foxconn, the world's largest contract manufacturer, is interested in either taking a stake in or buying some of Toshiba's businesses.
Toshiba said it will sell a minority stake in its memory chip business as it urgently seeks funds to offset an imminent multi-billion dollar writedown, adding that its overseas nuclear division-the cause of its woes-was now under review.
Last week, Toshiba confirmed that it's looking to spin off its core semiconductor business. Toshiba's chip division includes its lucrative NAND memory business, which generated 15% of the group's JPY5.7 trillion annual revenue (about $50 billion), and has an estimated value of about JPY1.5 trillion (about $13 billion).
Four foreign investment funds have reportedly offered to take a stake in Toshiba's memory chip operations should the Japanese electronics giant spin off the business.
Nikkei Electronics Asia
Qualcomm used anticompetitive tactics to maintain a monopoly over semiconductor supply, the Federal Trade Commission alleged in a complaint on Tuesday.
Toshiba is looking to sell a minority stake in its core semiconductor business to Western Digital, a source said, in a bid to dull the blow from a looming multi-billion-dollar writedown on a US nuclear acquisition.
The Crossbar ReRAM for embedded non-volatile memory applications is in production at partner foundry Semiconductor Manufacturing International (SMIC) using a 40nm CMOS process and is sampling to SMIC customers, according to Sylvain Dubois, Crossbar's VP of strategic marketing and business development.
China's push to develop its domestic semiconductor technology threatens to harm US chipmakers and put America's national security at risk, the Obama administration warned in a report that called for greater scrutiny of Chinese industrial policy.
Momentum behind the push to transition the semiconductor industry to 450mm wafers - which seemed substantial just a few short years ago - now appears all but dead, at least for now.
Two senior China executives defended the country's big bet on its semiconductor industry here a week after a White House report called for international action against practices it called unfair. Executives from fab and capital equipment companies said the China government is not being unfair in the way it supports its still-infant industry.
The Obama administration is finalizing a study that could lead to restrictions on Chinese investment in the US semiconductor sector.
Wall Street Journal
As the demand for localized processing has grown, FPGAs have offered a way to keep devices running without quickly draining the battery. Lattice Semiconductor, while it has a small share of the FPGA market, has distinguished itself by reducing its FPGA power draw down to the microwatt level.
Analysts with BlueFin Research Partners say that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) will begin manufacturing Apple's A11 processor in late April.
Samsung Electronics is considering a reorganization of the System LSI division in order to systematically grow the system semiconductor business. The company is planning to separate the design and manufacturing sectors in the business unit and divide or spin off it to fabless and foundry business divisions.
Samsung in November said it would acquire Harman International Industries for $8 billion in a bid to grow quickly in the automotive market.
A Chinese takeover bid for Aixtron of Germany collapsed Thursday, a week after US President Barack Obama blocked the deal on national-security grounds, according to a statement from the buyer.
Wall Street Journal
China's National Silicon Industry Group, a state-backed semiconductor investment fund, is interested in acquiring a majority stake in German silicon-wafer maker Siltronic, the latest potential Chinese takeover that could face political opposition, according to people familiar with the matter.
In the latest signal from Washington that it's protecting its semiconductor industry from Beijing, US President Barack Obama on Friday issued an executive order barring a Chinese deal to buy a German semiconductor company's California-based subsidiary, citing national security reasons.
Ever since Siemens announced its plan to acquire Mentor Graphics three weeks ago, many in the semiconductor industry have been poking and parsing its implications. They've found, thus far, more questions than answers.
Canyon Bridge Capital Partners, a buyout fund that agreed to acquire US-based chipmaker Lattice Semiconductor for $1.3 billion earlier this month, is funded partly by cash originating from China's central government and also has indirect links to its space program, Chinese corporate filings show.
Some insiders of the company are suggesting to reorganize the System LSI division in order to systematically grow the system semiconductor business. They are planning to separate the design and manufacturing sectors in the division and separate or spin off to fabless and foundry business divisions.
Qualcomm US$39 billion deal to buy NXP Semiconductors helped push US announced deal volume this month to US$248.9 billion, according to data provider Dealogic.
Wall Street Journal
Advances in semiconductor technology will be on display at the International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC). Samsung and TSMC will describe 7nm SRAMs, Mediatek will show a 10nm SoC and STMicroelectronics will unveil a neural network accelerator made in a fully depleted silicon-on-insulator process.
Zeiss SMT has been a supplier to ASML for 30 years. It makes lenses and other equipment needed to focus the energy beams ASML uses to help companies such as Intel and Samsung create the circuitry of semiconductor chips.
Massive government investment in China's semiconductor industry risks distorting the global market for integrated circuits, leading to damaging overcapacity and stifling innovation, US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker has warned.
The all-American iPhone may remain somewhat of a fantasy for now, but at least a few more of its internal chips could end up being manufactured on home turf.
MIT Technology Review
The fund will have a size of about KRW200 billion (US$175.4 million), of which KRW50 billion will be financed by Samsung Electronics and KRW25 billion by SK Hynix.
Samsung Electronics said strength in its semiconductor business offset the impact to its mobile phone business caused by exploding batteries in its flagship Galaxy Note 7 products.
In a surprise move on Monday, the German authorities withdrew approval for the takeover of a domestic semiconductor firm by a Chinese bidder, a deal that was set to be an emblem of a new push by Chinese companies to acquire cutting-edge technology businesses and a sign of Berlin's tolerance for such moves.
New York Times
Total loss at Mubadala's technology companies, mainly made up of semiconductor manufacturer Globalfoundries, deepened from Dh2.9bn in the first half of 2015 to Dh4.9bn in the first half of this year.
The Financial Times
Key iPhone assembler Hon Hai Precision Industry, also known as Foxconn Technology Group, is trying to expand its foothold in the semiconductor industry by partnering with SoftBank Group-owned ARM to create a chip design center in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, according to people familiar with the matter.
Nikkei Electronics Asia