Hsinchu, Taiwan-based global semiconductor silicon wafer company, GlobalWafers, announced today that it plans to build a state-of-the-art 300-millimeter silicon wafer factory in Sherman, Texas, which is the first of its kind in the USA over twenty (20) years. Construction is expected to commence later this year. This 300-millimeter greenfield investment is consistent with the Company's announcement on February 6th of this year of brownfield and greenfield expansions totaling NTD 100 bn. This new Texas investment could also support as many as 1,500 jobs with production volumes ultimately reaching 1.2 mn wafers per month after multiple stages of equipment installation, in alignment with market demand.
300-millimeter silicon wafers are the starting material for all advanced semiconductor fabrication sites (or fabs), including recently announced United States (US) expansions by GlobalFoundries, Intel, Samsung, Texas Instruments and TSMC. Most of these wafers are currently manufactured in Asia, forcing the US semiconductor industry to highly rely on imported silicon wafers. This investment will represent the first new silicon wafer facility in the US in over two decades and close a critical semiconductor supply chain gap.
GlobalWafers Chairman/CEO Doris Hsu stated, "With the global chips shortage and ongoing geopolitical concerns, GlobalWafers is taking this opportunity to address the United States semiconductor supply chain resiliency issue by building an advanced node, state-of-the-art, 300-millimeter silicon wafer factory. Instead of importing wafers from Asia, GlobalWafers USA (GWA) will produce and supply wafers locally thereby reducing significant carbon footprint benefitting both customers and GWA in the current ESG tide worldwide."
"Today's announcement from GlobalWafers is critical to rebuilding the domestic semiconductor supply chain, strengthening our economic and national security, and creating U.S. manufacturing jobs," said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. "The Biden Administration has worked tirelessly to make the U.S. an attractive place to manufacture semiconductors and their components, and are excited that GlobalWafers chose Texas for their new facility. But we are at a make-or-break moment to expand domestic semiconductor production. Semiconductor firms need to make investment decisions by the Fall to meet the enormous increased demand for chips. GlobalWafers committed to the US because they believe Congress will get the Bipartisan Innovation Act over the finish line in the coming weeks. Moving quickly to pass this bill will demonstrate America's commitment to robust domestic semiconductor capacity and provide more companies throughout the supply chain the confidence they need to move forward with investments here."
"The State of Texas continues to attract and support world-class manufacturers that are leading breakthroughs in innovation and technology," said Governor Abbott. "GlobalWafers' ongoing partnership with the City of Sherman, which was initiated with GlobiTech, will create more than a thousand new jobs for the region and investing billions of dollars into our state's economy, boosting Texas's global position in the semiconductor industry amid a worldwide chip shortage. We look forward to continuing working with GlobalWafers to keep providing economic opportunities through its expanded presence in the Lone Star State."
"Sherman has spent years building a business-friendly climate and laying the groundwork to support large employers," said David Plyer, Mayor of Sherman. "Now, for the second time in less than a year, that investment has paid huge dividends. GlobalWafers' decision to locate their state-of-the-art, semiconductor silicon wafer facility in Sherman will meet a critical industry need and cement our city's status as a center of high-tech manufacturing, not only in Texas, but across the country. I want to thank GlobalWafers for their investment in Sherman and for the trust they have placed in our local leadership. This project will provide profound benefits for our citizens, our city and Grayson County for decades to come."
Production from the first fab is anticipated as early as 2025, according to the Company. GlobalWafers will use the new North Texas site to address the silicon wafer shortage, which has contributed to the semiconductor or "chips" crisis. The company's business is unprecedented and continues to sell out future output, including the volumes anticipated from this new site.
"This announcement is another critical step in addressing the US and global chips supply issue", commented Sherman-based, GlobalWafers President Mark England. Moreover, in order to level the global incentive playing field, the impending passage of the US CHIPS Act will be instrumental in ensuring ongoing semiconductor investments of this kind. With the proper level of federal incentives, I can envision the City of Sherman developing into the complete semiconductor ecosystem to fully support the growing US semiconductor industry."
It will be a couple of years before chips can be manufactured there.