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GlobalFoundries Logo 2021
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How GLOBALFOUNDRIES is Differentiating in 2013

How GLOBALFOUNDRIES is Differentiating in 2013
by Daniel Nenni on 01-27-2013 at 7:00 pm

 GLOBALFOUNDRIES changed the landscape of the foundry business in 2009 with a simple but ambitious plan to become the world’s first truly global foundry. At the Common Platform Technology Forum February 5th in the Santa Clara Convention Center GF Executive Vice President Michael Noonen will give an update on how that is going.

Mike’s theme will be “Common Technology, Uncommon Solutions.” The idea is to talk about how GLOBALFOUNDRIES is leveraging the common technology platform enabled by the partnership with IBM and Samsung to differentiate and provide innovative solutions for their customers.

He will start with a presentation of the highlights of 2012. It was an excellent year for GLOBALFOUNDRIES on a number of fronts:

  • GF overcame early challenges on 32nm and now Fab 1 in Dresden is churning out wafers with world-class yields. They have shipped more than 500,000 HKMG wafers, which is far more than any other foundry.
  • The new Fab 8 in upstate NY began running first silicon on a well established 32/28nm process technology node, and simultaneously GF has been making significant progress in technology development for the 20nm and 14nm nodes. They hired nearly 2,000 people for the Fab 8 team and have 200 additional people in other locations in New York. And of course they just announced plans to construct a new $2B Technology Development Center (TDC).
  • GF introduced the industry’s first “modular” FinFET approach with their new 14nm-XM technology. This unique technology will allow them to offer customers the performance and power advantages of FinFET transistors on an accelerated schedule with less risk. The 14nm-XM technology is optimized for the fast-growing smart mobile device market.
  • For mobile processors, GF continued deepening their partnership with ARM to optimize leading-edge process technologies for next-generation ARM IP.
  • And last but not least, GF surpassed UMC to become the #2 foundry, while continuing to drive impressive year-on-year revenue increases. In fact, research firm IC Insights recently released its projections for the top 20 leading semiconductor suppliers in 2012, and GF jumped six spots to break into the top 20 for the first time. IC Insights projected 2012 revenue to grow 31% over 2011, which would make GF the fastest growing semiconductor company in the world.

Mike will then talk about some of the “Uncommon Solutions” partners and customers are creating in partnership with GLOBALFOUNDRIES. I’m sure you’ve heard talk about the concept of “Collaborative Device Manufacturing” (CDM). GF firmly believes the foundry model has a bright future, but like all living organisms, GF must continue to evolve.

The CDM solution involves strategic collaboration that creates a ‘virtual IDM-like interface’ to chip design companies to help further close the gap between process teams at the manufacturing companies and design teams at the fabless companies. Collaboration – early, often and deep – is really the only practical approach given the cost and complexities involved. GF calls this CDM.

The GLOBALFOUNDRIES partnership with ARM is a great example of this early collaboration and co-optimization. Another good example is the GF approach to packaging innovation. While other foundries are taking full control of offerings for advanced packaging, GF has developed a collaborative approach with key assembly and test partners. This will allow GF to develop more robust solutions by tapping the expertise from different steps in the supply chain.

Mike will also highlight several new examples of innovative projects they are working on with partners and customers. Unfortunately I can’t give you a preview here because they won’t be announced until the day of the event so stay tuned!

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