In response to changing industry dynamics, AMD announced in October 2008 a new strategy to focus exclusively on the design phase of semiconductor product development. To achieve that strategy, AMD partnered with Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC) of Abu Dhabi to create a new joint venture company designed to become the world’s first truly global contract manufacturer of semiconductors.
On March 4, 2009, GLOBALFOUNDRIES was launched as a new joint venture combining AMD’s leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing capabilities with the long-term financial backing of ATIC. This created a new global semiconductor manufacturing foundry with approximately 3,000 employees with AMD as its first customer.
In January 2010, the company announced the completion of its merger of operations with Chartered Semiconductor, a global semiconductor foundry based in Singapore. At the time, Chartered consisted of about 7,000 employees, mostly based at the company’s 6 fabs in Singapore.
Today, GLOBALFOUNDRIES is wholly owned by ATIC and is the world’s second largest independent semiconductor foundry. However, GF is still one fourth the size of number one foundry TSMC and faces stiff competition from the ever aggressive Samsung Foundry Division and the newly launched Intel Custom Foundry Business Unit. More recently, GF shuffled the executive staff and acquired a new CEO:
Santa Clara, Calif., January 6, 2014 —Building on the successful track record of its first five years in the semiconductor industry and its continued commitment to build out its global network of manufacturing facilities, GLOBALFOUNDRIES announced today, from its new offices in Silicon Valley, Sanjay Jha has been appointed as the company’s new Chief Executive Officer. Jha has served as CEO of Motorola Mobility Inc. and as the COO of Qualcomm Inc.
After spending 14 years at Qualcomm, Sanjay joined Motorola Mobility as CEO in 2008. Sanjay then sold Motorola Mobility to Google in 2011 for $12.5B with an exit package of more the $65M. Google then sold Motorola Mobility to Lenovo in 2014 for $2.91B. Yes Sanjay is a very clever man and he knows the fabless semiconductor ecosystem inside and out.
The $100B question is: What is next for GLOBALFOUNDRIES? The wild card here of course is Sanjay Jha. I do not know Sanjay personally (yet) but I do know people who know him and based on this, I’m wildly optimistic!
It is highly unlikely that Sanjay signed on to continue to stay the course at GLOBALFOUNDRIES. Being a second source or boutique foundry against the likes of TSMC, Samsung, and Intel makes no sense whatsoever. My guess is that Sanjay will go on an acquisition spree with the intention of building a major force in the semiconductor industry, absolutely. If I were Sanjay I would start with MediaTek and I will tell you why in the comments section. Acquiring the IBM semiconductor operations is also on the table I hear.
GF reads SemiWiki so offer your advice to Sanjay. This could be a real game changer, absolutely!
GLOBALFOUNDRIES is the world’s first full-service semiconductor foundry with a truly global footprint. Launched in March 2009, the company has quickly achieved scale as the second largest foundry in the world, providing a unique combination of advanced technology and manufacturing to more than 160 customers. With operations in Singapore, Germany and the United States, GLOBALFOUNDRIES is the only foundry that offers the flexibility and security of manufacturing centers spanning three continents. The company’s three 300mm fabs and five 200mm fabs provide the full range of process technologies from mainstream to the leading edge. This global manufacturing footprint is supported by major facilities for research, development and design enablement located near hubs of semiconductor activity in the United States, Europe and Asia. GLOBALFOUNDRIES is owned by the Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC). For more information, visit http://www.globalfoundries.com.
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