[News] VIS Set to Establish 12-Inch Semiconductor Plant, Transforming Singapore’s Semiconductor Hub

2023-10-24 Semiconductors editor

As reported by Nikkei Asia on October 23rd, three inside sources have indicated that Vanguard International Semiconductor(VIS), a prominent semiconductor foundry, is gearing up to construct its first 12-inch wafer plant in Singapore, aiming to meet the surging demand for automotive chips.

It’s important to note that TSMC, the parent company of VIS, holds a significant 28.3% stake in the company. When approached for comments, VIS stated they remain open to various possibilities but are currently observing a quiet period preceding an earnings call, which restricts them to provide further details.

VIS’s Growth and Singapore Expansion

In 2019, VIS acquired a Singaporean 200mm wafer facility from GlobalFoundries for $236 million. Since then, they diversified into producing various sensors and gained a reputation in display driver ICs and power management chips. VIS operated only 200mm wafer plants in Taiwan and Singapore. Recent reports suggest their investment in a 12-inch wafer plant in Singapore is nearing approval, per Nikkei.

The new VIS plant in Tampines, Singapore, is strategically located, a 10-minute drive from their existing 200mm facility and near NXP and SSMC, TSMC’s joint venture. UMC is investing $5 billion in a nearby plant. Expansions by GlobalFoundries and Applied Materials in Singapore bolster the city-state’s semiconductor industry.

Chairman Leuh Fang cited increased demand from U.S., European, and Asian customers who aim to mitigate geopolitical risks tied to chips manufactured in China. His prior role as Deputy General Manager of SSMC in Singapore underscores the importance of this move.

Global Giants Expand Abroad to Meet Clients’ Demand

In line with its global expansion strategy, VIS is not the only player. TSMC is processing its global factory construction as well. Of particular note, the new facility in Arizona, US. The German plant is on schedule for production in 2027. In Japan, the Kumamoto plant is advancing rapidly, and production is anticipated to commence by the end of 2024. Besides, PSMC is planning to establish a 12-inch wafer plant in Japan, becomes the second Taiwanese semiconductor giant to set up shop in Japan after this move, expanding its global presence.

(Image: VIS)

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