GlobalWafers, the world’s 3rd largest silicon wafer maker and also Taiwan’s largest, is considering to expand its manufacturing capacity in the United States.
The US expansion will be a part of GlobalWafers’ US$800 to US$900 million plan for capacity expansion in the coming two years. Currently, GlobalWafers operates two manufacturing facilities in the states of Missouri and Texas.
According to Dorris Hsu, the chairwoman of GlobalWafers, the company plans to expand its 200mm and 150mm epitaxy facilities in the US, targeting compound semiconductors. In addition, it will also boost its capacity of 300mm silicon-on-insulator wafers. Currently, GlobalWafers’ 300mm wafer capacity is concentrated in Taiwan, South Korea and Japan.
At the same time, Hsu indicates that discussions on US subsidies are still ongoing. It is expected that GlobalWafers will play a certain role in the Technology Trade and Investment Collaboration (TTIC) framework recently established between the US and Taiwan, since none of the world’s top five wafer manufacturers are based in the US.
♦ Further reading – GlobalWafers closer to Siltronic acquisition, a setback for China
With a global market share of 15.2%, GlobalWafers is currently in the process of acquiring Siltronic AG, the world’s 4th largest wafer manufacturer with a global market share of 11.5%. The acquisition process began in 2020, and has already obtained approvals from antitrust authorities from several countries, including Taiwan and the US.
Doris Hsu revealed that the deal still awaits approvals from relevant authorities in China and Germany. If completed, the acquisition would make GlobalWafers the world’s second largest wafer manufacturer with a market share of 26.7%, surpassing its Japanese rival SUMCO Corp., and coming up behind Japan’s Shin-Etsu Chemical, currently the market leader with a 33% market share.