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GlobalFoundries debuts in top foundry list

Posted: 29 Jan 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:foundry? ranking list? IDM?

Most foundries lost share amid the downturn, according to IC Insights Inc.'s rankings for the top 17 foundries in terms of sales in 2009.

GlobalFoundries Inc. entered the rankings picture at the No. 5 spot while IDM foundries, namely IBM, Samsung and Texas Instruments, lagged the field.

The pure-play vendors in Taiwan led the field. "TSMC's sales in 2009 were more than 3x that of UMC, which in turn had more than the combined foundry sales of Chartered and SMIC in 2009," according to IC Insights.

"In 2007, SMIC moved past Chartered in sales and took over third place. However, with SMIC's exit from the DRAM foundry business in 2008, coupled with Chartered's acquisition of the Hitachi fab in Singapore, Chartered once again seized the third place ranking from SMIC in 2008. In 2009, Chartered's sales were 43 percent greater than fourth-ranked SMIC," according to the report.

"AMD spin-off GlobalFoundries acquired Chartered in 4Q09 and combined, would have had sales of just over $1.6 billion in 2009," according to the report. "The combined sales of Chartered and GlobalFoundries would have been just over $2.6 billion in 2009, enough to put the combined company's sales only 8 percent behind second-ranked UMC."

In 2008, the new silicon foundry spinoff from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. opened for business, disclosed its corporate name and unveiled its strategy. GlobalFoundries is a joint venture between AMD and the Advanced Technology Investment Co. (ATIC) of Abu Dhabi. Under the current plan, AMD owns a 34.2 percent stake of the foundry venture, while ATIC will own the remaining shares.

Last year, TowerJazz gained share. More than one year after buying Jazz Semiconductor Inc., Israel's Tower Semiconductor Ltdor TowerJazzis now taking steps to reach its two main goals in its ongoing turnaround efforts. It hopes to finally reach profitability and become the world's largest player in the wide-open specialty foundry business in 2010.

The IDM foundries are lagging, including IBM and Samsung. For years, Samsung has been in the foundry business and claims it wants to become a major player in the arena. Samsung entered the foundry business in 2006 with sales of about $75 million. In 2007, it had sales of $385 million, according to IC Insights, although this was behind other leading IDMs that are in the foundry arena.

Samsung, which is spending a ton in R&D, was in the ninth place in 2009. Its 2008 foundry sales were $370 million. Its 2009 foundry sales were $325 million, down 12 percent.

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