Vanguard is an affiliate of leading foundry Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), and its move to foundry operations will likely give TSMC another source of sorely needed capacity. Recently, TSMC said it would acquire Worldwide Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp. and the remaining shares of TSMC Acer Semiconductor Manufacturing (TASMC). The two transactions are expected to boost TSMC's annual capacity by 13% to 3.36 million 8-inch wafer equivalents this year. While a specific value has not been placed on the WSMC acquisition, analysts in Taiwan say the company came at a high price. Rival foundry UMC, which was also said to be in the bidding for WSMC, is planning capacity of 2.4 million 8-inch wafer equivalents this year.
By Christine Lunday, Online Editor
Orders for semiconductor equipment from North American producers reached another record in December at $1.83 billion, according to the latest report from the Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI) trade association.