Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) is looking to acquire land and facilities from DRAM maker Powerchip Technology for slightly above NT$3 billion (US$102 million), the Chinese-language Commercial Times cited unnamed sources as reporting on December 27.
TSMC reportedly is negotiating to take over Powerchip's P4 plant, which is still under construction, and a land lot designated for construction of Powerchip's P5 plant, according to the paper. The two manufacturing sites are located near the foundry's 12-inch Fab 12 at the Hsinchu Science Park (HSP), northern Taiwan.
Powerchip reportedly has left P4 idle after the shell construction was completed, and postponed the construction of P5, due to the industry downturn. The company in April 2008 hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the new 12-inch fabs, which were to join its existing three fabs capable of outputting 130,000 wafers a month.
In other news, a Nikkei business daily report recently said TSMC is among Toshiba's potential foundry partners. Toshiba on December 24 announced plans to expand outsourcing of system chips, including 40nm products, to multiple foundries starting its fiscal 2011.
Nobunaga Chai, analyst for semiconductors at Digitimes Research, in a recent research report pointed out that TSMC would be the largest beneficiary of increased outsourcing by IDMs thanks to the foundry's lead in advanced process capacity. Combined capacity at TSMC's 12-inch wafer fabs outpaced that of its 6- and 8-inch facilities for the first time in the third quarter of 2010, at 1.505 million versus 1.443 million units of 8-inch equivalent wafers, Chai said.
Chai forecast TSMC will continue dominating the global pure-play foundry industry in 2011 with a 52% share, followed by United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC) with 15% and Globalfoundries with 12%.