United Microelectronics Corp (UMC, 聯電), the world’s third-largest contract chipmaker, yesterday said its board of directors has approved a preliminary capital spending budget of NT$27.41 billion (US$887.6 million) to boost 12-inch and 8-inch wafer capacities for next year.
“The outlay is mostly for expanding capacities via debottlenecking [in the manufacturing process] and adding automation to fabs in Taiwan, Singapore and Xiamen of China,” chief financial officer Liu Chi-tung (劉啟東) said by telephone.
“We aim to expand the capacity of a 12-inch Xiamen fab to reach economic scale, ” he said.
The chipmaker plans to allocate part of the fund to boost specialty technologies with die sizes of bigger than 40 nanometers at a 12-inch fab operated by United Semiconductor (Xiamen) Co (聯芯).
The Xiamen fab would see monthly capacity increase to 25,000 wafers, up 47 percent from 17,000 wafers, UMC said.
The fund would also be used to boost production at an 8-inch fab operated by Hejian Technology (Suzhou) Co Ltd (和艦科技) to 75,000 wafers per month from 65,000 wafers, Liu said.
“Demand for 8-inch wafers continues to surpass supply,” he added.
The company in October said it was at capacity this quarter, driven by robust demand for consumer electronics customers.
This year, UMC expects 8-inch wafer capacity to grow 2 percent year-on-year and to continue increasing next year.
The company plans to spend US$1.1 billion on new equipment, which is to add 5 percent to total wafer capacity this year compared with last year.
Softbank Group Corp plans to keep a stake in the chip designer Arm Ltd, even if it sells a partial interest to Nvidia Corp, the Nikkei reported. The companies are negotiating terms, the newspaper reported, citing sources. Softbank might take a stake in Nvidia after it buys Arm, the report said. Nvidia and Arm might also merge through a share swap, and Softbank would become a major shareholder in the combined company, it said. The two parties aim to reach a deal in the next few weeks, the sources said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Nvidia is the
END TO SPECULATION: The hotel’s management contract has been extended, despite reports that it wanted to end its alliance with Hyatt Hotels over a deal with Riant Capital Singapore-based Hong Leong Hotel Development Ltd (豐隆大飯店股份) yesterday said it has extended a management contract to ensure the continued presence of the Grand Hyatt brand in Taipei, ending rumors that the two sides were parting ways. “We are pleased Hyatt is able to come to terms on the extension of the management contract of Grand Hyatt Taipei,” said Kwek Leng Beng (郭令明), executive chairman of City Developments Ltd (城市發展) and Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Ltd (千禧國敦酒店). Hong Leong Hotel Development is a subsidiary of Millennium, and both fall under the Hong Leong Group (豐隆集團). The Grand Hyatt Taipei (台北君悅大飯店), owned and built by
MOVING FROM CHINA? The article did not name the company, but Foxconn, Wistron and Pegatron were among firms chosen for a production-linked incentive plan in India An Apple Inc vendor is looking at shifting six production lines to India from China, which could result in US$5 billion of iPhone exports from the South Asian nation, the Times of India reported, citing people familiar with the matter who it did not identify. The establishment of the facility would create about 55,000 jobs over about a year, the newspaper reported, not naming the Apple vendor. It would also cater to the domestic market and expand operations to include tablets and laptops, the newspaper reported. Samsung Electronics Co and Apple’s assembly partners are among 22 companies that have pledged 110 billion
’WHITE BOX’: The open platform would give local firms access to Cisco’s cloud-based mobile network to develop 5G telecom equipment and tap into the global market The Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) yesterday introduced a new 5G “open lab” in collaboration with US-based information technology and networking giant Cisco Systems Inc to address the rapidly growing “white box” 5G networking equipment market. The open lab will be a platform where Taiwanese manufacturers can access Cisco’s cloud-based mobile network to develop their own 5G telecom equipment, such as small-cell base stations, network switches, modems and Internet of things (IoT) devices, a ministry statement said. The open platform would allow Taiwanese manufacturers to tap into the lucrative 5G telecom equipment market, which was previously monopolized by Nokia Oyj, Ericsson AB