IC Foundries Face Shortages

(August 7, 2007) SCOTTSDALE, AZ &#151 The major IC foundries &#151 including TSMC, UMC, SMIC, and Chartered &#151 will move from 78.5% capacity utilization in Q’01 2007 to 97.5% by Q’04 2007, according to the “August Update to the McClean Report,” from IC Insights. This shift signals IC foundry customers to secure Q’04 2007 and early 2008 capacity needs, as space may run out.

The top four foundries, listed above, hold about 75% of total global pure-play foundry capacity, states IC Insight’s report. The same companies hold 99% of global 90-nm, and below, capacity. TSMC will jump from 83% utilization to 100% by Q’04 2007; UMC will increase from 70% to 90%. China-based SMIC significantly cut capital spending over the past three years; therefore, the foundry may not be equipped to increase potential capacity to stay at-pace with the up tick in orders, IC Insights predicts. Its capacity utilization rate will be above 90% by Q’04 2007. Chartered will hit 88% utilization in Q’04 2007, and will climb above 90% in the first half of 2008.

IC Insights sees these major foundries registering 42% more wafer shipments in Q’04 than in Q’01 2007, with a 14% increase in potential wafer-processing capacity over this span. Total capital spending is too low, IC Insights claims, and will reach 9% for 2007. For more on the August Update, see www.icinsights.com.


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