Semiconductor market news from DPE- November 15 to November 21

1、ASML sees around $2.3 bln of sales in China in 2021, 2022

Nov 18,Dutch semiconductor equipment maker ASML said the company sees demand for its products remaining strong in China, with around 2 billion euros ($2.3 billion) in sales in 2021.

Chief Financial Officer Roger Dassen said ASML, which is currently operating at full capacity amid the global semiconductor shortage, thinks it will have a similar level of sales in China in 2022.

I expect that sales into domestic China will be a little in excess of 2 billion (euros) this year, he said, distributed between logic and memory chip customers.

For next year I wouldn’t expect a dramatic increase in that number, but we would expect that number to be sustained, so also next year pretty strong sales.

ASML is the dominant maker of lithography systems, the technology used to create the circuitry of computer chips.

2、Texas Instruments to begin construction next year on new 300-mm semiconductor wafer fabrication plants

On November 17, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) announced plans to begin construction next year on its new 300-millimeter semiconductor wafer fabrication plants (or “fabs”) in Sherman, Texas. The North Texas site has the potential for up to four fabs to meet demand over time, as semiconductor growth in electronics, particularly in industrial and automotive markets, is expected to continue well into the future. Construction of the first and second fabs is set to begin in 2022.

“TI’s future analog and embedded processing 300-mm fabs at the Sherman site are part of our long-term capacity planning to continue to strengthen our manufacturing and technology competitive advantage and support our customers’ demand in the coming decades,” said Rich Templeton, TI’s chairman, president and CEO. “Our commitment to North Texas spans more than 90 years, and this decision is a testament to our strong partnership and investment in the Sherman community.”

Production from the first new fab is expected as early as 2025. With the option to include up to four fabs, total investment potential at the site could reach approximately $30 billion and support 3,000 direct jobs over time.

3、Samsung will reportedly move part of its smartphone production capacity from Vietnam to India

Global tech powerhouse Samsung is redistributing its production capacity across its seven manufacturing sites. The moves are part of plans by the company to ensure that no facility exceeds more than 30% of the overall production numbers. The move by Samsung will see its two manufacturing plants in Vietnam scale down its current production of about 182 million units to 163 million units annually.

Samsung’s move is part of the company’s long-term aim of risk redistribution. The expansion of Samsung’s India production facility will see it producing 108 million smartphones by 2026, although the expansion trajectory could see the Indian plant becoming Samsung’s largest by 2024.

Samsung has manufacturing facilities in India, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Brazil, outside its home market of Korea. The capacities of the production facilities will probably remain unchanged this year, while the changes will start to be noticed from 2022. The focus seems to be on the huge customer base offered by the Indian market. The scaling up of Samsung’s operations in India will help it to shore up its numbers in the subcontinent. The production redistribution will see India accounting for 25% of the total production in 2026, while Vietnam will have 20%, Indonesia, 14%, and Brazil, 6%.

Samsung continues to firm up its operations and has factored some degree of uncertainty into its production, as there is room for an additional 20% of units produced as a reserve in the situation of a surge in demand beyond the projected numbers.

4、Murata Building new Thai Facility for MLCC Capacitors

A Thai arm of Japanese electronics components maker Murata Manufacturing Co. is building a new production plant for multilayer ceramic capacitors, expecting the surge in demand for the products to rise further in the mid-and long term.

The Kyoto-based firm said that Murata Electronics (Thailand) Ltd. in July started constructing the facility at a site near its current production base located in an industrial park in northern Lamphun Province.

Construction is scheduled for completion in March 2023. Murata said it is spending 12 billion yen ($105 million) on the new building, but did not disclose the total investment amount including costs for purchasing the land and procuring equipment.

Ceramic capacitors are the tiny parts designed to control the flow of electricity. With noise removal and voltage adjustment among the main features, they are widely used in electronic devices installed in smartphones, cars and personal computers, as well as a large number of other items.

Murata Electronics (Thailand) was founded in 1988 and has a workforce of about 6,800. It plans to add 2,000 employees several years after the completion of the new facility.

5、SK Hynix’s CN Wuxi Plant Upgrade Said to be Impeded by the US

On Nov. 18, South Korean semiconductor major SK Hynix originally planned to upgrade its chip production facilities at its Chinese plant, but the plan is now in trouble due to U.S. concerns that the Chinese Communist Party is using advanced chip technology to strengthen its military power, according to people familiar with the matter.

According to Reuters, three people familiar with the matter said that SK Hynix, one of the world’s largest suppliers of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips and a major South Korean semiconductor manufacturer, was scheduled to upgrade its mass production equipment by equipping its Wuxi plant in the People’s Republic of China with the latest extreme ultraviolet (EUV) micro-imaging technology chip manufacturing machine from the Netherlands’ Acemore (ASML).

But according to a senior White House official, the Biden administration is concerned that chip technology will strengthen the Chinese Communist Party’s military power and remains committed to preventing the CCP from using the U.S. and allied technology to develop state-of-the-art semiconductor manufacturing. Therefore, there may be potential setbacks for SK Hynix in this plan.

6、Renesas Enters FPGA Market With the First Ultra-Low-Power, Low-Cost Family Addressing Low-Density, High-Volume Applications

On November 18th, the world’s leading semiconductor manufacturer Renesas Electronics released the ForgeFPGA series of products featuring ultra-low power consumption and low cost and officially entered the FPGA (Field-programmable gate array) market.

Renesas Electronics claims that their ForgeFPGA chips are lower in cost compared with non-FPGA designs and other similar solutions, and the wholesale price is expected to be less than US$0.5, or approximately RMB 3.2. It claims that a large number of C-side and IoT products that were previously limited by cost and unable to use FPGA chips will benefit.

Davin Lee, vice president of Renesas Electronics’ Internet of Things and Infrastructure Business Unit, said: “We are eager to extend our leading position in the small, low-cost, programmable market to FPGAs.”

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