The Week In Review: Manufacturing

New Samsung fab; UMC in China; silicon wafer forecast; Applied’s award.

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Samsung Electronics signed a memorandum of understanding to construct a new semiconductor fab in the company’s Godeok Industrial Complex in Pyeongtaek. The construction of the new semiconductor fabrication plant will begin during the first half of 2015, and operations are scheduled to begin sometime during the second half of 2017.

United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) will participate in a three-way agreement for a joint venture company focused on 300mm wafer foundry services with Xiamen Municipal People’s Government and FuJian Electronics & Information Group. The joint venture will be based in Xiamen, China. UMC anticipates its investment could reach approximately $1.35 billion in the next five years. UMC currently owns an 86.88% stake in HeJian Technology, which mainly provides 200mm foundry services.

SEMI recently completed its annual silicon shipment forecast for the semiconductor industry. Total wafer shipments this year are expected to finally exceed the market high set in 2010 and are forecast to continue shipping at record levels in 2015 and 2016.

Applied Materials’ Executive Chairman Mike Splinter received the Silicon Valley Education Foundation’s (SVEF) Pioneer Business Leader Award for driving change in business and education.

GT Advanced Technologies has been working with Apple to commercialize sapphire technology for smartphones and smartwatches. The deal has gone south, as GT filed chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of New Hampshire.

Cohu appointed Luis Mϋller as president and chief executive, effective Dec. 28, 2014, succeeding James Donahue who will retire.

Allied Minds announced that a subsidiary company, Spin Transfer Technologies (STT), has raised $70 million in funding.

StoreDot announced the completion of its Series B Round of financing of $42 million. StoreDot has devised an ultra-fast-charge battery that uses “nanodots” derived from bio-organic material.

AMD has appointed Lisa Su as president and chief executive and member of the board of directors. Su succeeds Rory Read, who has stepped down.

MaxLinear has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Physpeed, a developer of high-speed physical layer interconnect products.

The International Test Conference (ITC) will be held October 21-23 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.