Chinese GPU startup Moore Threads reportedly to cut jobs

Mavis Tsai, Taipei, DIGITIMES 0

Credit: AFP

The Chinese GPU startup, Moore Threads Technology Co., which was previously added to the Entity List by the US Department of Commerce, has recently sent a letter to all its employees announcing layoffs, expected to be completed within this week. At the same time, the company is establishing two strategic departments to integrate its resources.

According to Chinese media Jiemian, Moore Threads CEO, Zhang Jianzhong, mentioned in an internal company communication that the entire Chinese GPU/AI chip industry has been severely affected by the "1017 incident." He emphasized that Moore Threads has always had one mission: to create the best general-purpose GPU in China.

In the letter, it was mentioned that Moore Threads would set up two strategic departments: AISG and MCSG. In terms of personnel performance, a "routine position optimization" will be carried out with a focus on GPU core research and development, expected to be completed within this week. It was emphasized that this is a necessary step for the company's continued development and a difficult decision, and they hope to gain understanding from their employees.

The "1017 incident" refers to October 17, 2023, when the US government tightened export controls on AI chips and placed Moore Threads, Biren, and other Chinese companies on the Entity List. AISG and MCSG refer to the AI Strategy Group and Metaverse Computing Strategy Group, respectively.

Jiemian also quoted insiders who said that Moore Threads, founded in October 2020, has grown rapidly over the past three years and currently has nearly a thousand employees. This "personnel optimization" is the result of a normal performance evaluation, as the company needs to focus on its strategic priorities.

According to the South China Morning Post, Moore Threads had previously stated that its first and second-generation MUSA architecture general-purpose GPUs, which were released in 2022, have already begun mass production.

Furthermore, according to the German media 3D Center, Moore Threads may be testing a new generation of graphics cards, specifically the MTT S90 for PC applications and the MTT S4000 for data center applications. However, due to Moore Threads' inclusion in the US Entity List, there is significant interest in which advanced semiconductor manufacturer will be contracted to produce these new products.