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Marvell Founders Launch $2 Billion Silicon Box Chips Foundry In Singapore

Image Credit - Silicon Box

Marvell Founders Launch $2 Billion Silicon Box Chips Foundry In Singapore

Singapore-based Silicon Box opened a $2 billion advanced semiconductor manufacturing foundry in the city-state on 20 July 2023, as it seeks to broaden adoption of “chiplet” technology. It was created by the founders of U.S chipmaker Marvell, Sehat Sutardja and wife Weili Dai, along with current CEO BJ Han.

Sources: Reuters, The Straits Times

The two-year old startup said in a statement that the 73,000sqm factory would create over 1,000 jobs with support from Singapore’s Economic Development Board (EDB).

“This new facility is well poised to solve the unique challenges for chiplet adoption, which is critical to meet market demands of emerging technologies. Our proprietary interconnection technology will not only shorten the design cycle of chips but also lower new device costs, reduce power consumption and enable faster time-to-market for industry partners like artificial intelligence, data centres, and electronic vehicles” explains Dr. Han co-founder and CEO, Silicon Box to The Straits Times.

Silicon Box focuses on “chiplets”, or small chips, which can be the size of a grain of sand and are brought together in a process called advanced packaging, a cost-efficient way to bind small semiconductors to form one processor that can power everything from data centres to household appliances.

The global chip industry has increasingly embraced the technology in recent years as chip manufacturing costs soar in the race to make transistors small enough to be measured in the number of atoms. CEO Han told Reuters that “customers had been lining up” even before the factory’s launch, with artificial intelligence firms driving demand. He said Silicon Box was in talks to supply Canadian AI startup company Tenstorrent.

The establishment of this factory is poised to have a significant impact on Singapore’s semiconductor sector. It is expected to boost the industry’s growth and elevate the country’s standing as a formidable player in the global market. This development will contribute to the nation’s economic expansion and support Singapore’s long-term vision of expanding its manufacturing base.

Developing Local Talent To Be Ready For Next- Gen Manufacturing

With the support of EDB, the factory will create over 1000 technologically advanced jobs while providing upskilling opportunities. This venture focuses on human capital spanning from entry-level to highly skilled engineering roles; the homegrown talent is vested in Silicon Box’s vision as they commit to providing upskilling programs to keep the Singaporean workforce market-ready in disruptive technologies.

This investment will bolster the nation’s GDP and drive workforce development, ensuring Singapore remains at the forefront of technological innovation and manufacturing excellence.

“Singapore is home to a vibrant and sophisticated semiconductor industry, with a strong ecosystem of solution providers and partners. Silicon Box’s decision to set up its first manufacturing and R&D facility in Singapore is a testament to our competitiveness as a critical global node for semiconductors and a vote of confidence in the long-term growth prospects of the sector in Singapore. We will continue strengthening our industry’s competitiveness by developing a stronger talent pipeline, reducing the sector’s carbon footprint, and deepening our semiconductor R&D capabilities” explains EDB’s Chairman Png Cheong Boon.

Next-Gen Semiconductor Technology To Accelerate The Future Of Computing And AI

Silicon Box offers design flexibility and exceptional electrical performance at a lower cost and power consumption with its proprietary fabrication method. They have developed the shortest interconnections using sub-5-micron technology, setting a new standard in semiconductor design cycles. This means the industry can efficiently scale chiplet-based solutions across the semiconductor value chain.

With Singapore actively starting semiconductor design facilities, automotive assembly plants and even battery jigs, the country will also go through a machine tool demand hike across the board – from metal cutting to forming.


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