United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) will become a minority shareholder in Fujitsu Semiconductor Limited’s newly formed 300mm foundry located in the Mie prefecture.
Earlier this month, Fujitsu announced it was shaking up its manufacturing business by spinning off two of its advanced manufacturing facilities into two separate, independent foundry subsidiaries – one located in the Mie prefecture of Japan and the other in Aizu prefecture. Fujitsu announced that ON Semiconductor would take a 10 percent ownership in the Aizu facility and now UMC will take a similar stake (9.3 percent) in the Mie foundry.
The Miu foundry will feature Fujitsu’s low power process and embedded memory technology with UMC’s foundry experience and advanced process technology. As part of the agreement with Fujitsu, UMC’s advanced 40nm technology will be also licensed to Fujitsu. UMC will also invest in the foundry to expand the 40nm manufacturing capacity. Fujitsu said it aims to expand the business of the foundry globally by strengthening its production and development capability as well as cost competitiveness.
Po Wen Yen, CEO of UMC, said in a statement that the Taiwanese company is exploring ways to expand its operations to increase its customers’ competitiveness. He added that partnering with Fujitsu “will not only offset the time, risk and cost of building a new fab, but also provide access to another 300mm manufacturing source in addition to UMC's own 300mm operations in Taiwan and Singapore.”
Yen said that both Fujitsu and UMC will be able to serve customers looking to migrate risk, such as Japan’s automotive chip makers. “UMC will also be able to leverage this strategic partnership to gain new foundry business within the Japanese market," he said.