Soitec Inaugurates New Wafer Fab in Singapore

Published on November 7, 2008 at 5:48 PM

Soitec (Euronext Paris), the world's leading supplier of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers and other engineered substrates used in the microelectronics industry, today held an inauguration ceremony for its new wafer fab in Singapore. Located in the new Pasir Ris Wafer Fab Park, the fully automated, state-of-the art facility is dedicated to the manufacturing of 300-mm SOI wafers. These wafers are used today for the production of high-performance, cutting-edge microprocessors for a growing number of advanced electronic devices, especially leading-edge consumer products that are increasingly manufactured in Asia. In addition to supplying SOI wafers for the game console chips produced in the region, this factory will support the region's use of SOI wafers in other high-volume consumer products.

Soitec is headquartered in Bernin (Grenoble), France, where it has two high-volume fabs on-site (Bernin I and Bernin II), as well as advanced R&D facilities. The new Singapore fab, known as Pasir Ris 1, is Soitec's first manufacturing facility in Asia. It represents a strategic part of the group's investment plan to expand worldwide production capacity, and forge closer relationships with customers worldwide.

In parallel, Soitec's strategic investments in the Pasir Ris fab have accelerated the implementation of a complementary wafer recycling process. This key "refresh" step is now integrated in the manufacturing lines, contributing to the key objective of the Group to reduce costs.

Attending today's ceremony were Singapore's Minister for Trade and Industry, Mr Lim Hng Kiang, the Soitec Group's President and Chief Executive Officer, Andre-Jacques Auberton-Herve, and all of Soitec's board members. Commenting on today's announcement, Dr. Auberton-Herve noted, "With its strategic location, this new state-of-the-art fab reinforces our position at the leading edge of one of the world's most exciting markets. We believe that our technology leadership, industrial maturity and new capacity in Singapore, provide a very strong foundation for our longer-term progress. We are very pleased to be here."

"This new 300-mm wafer fabrication plant benefits from the strong support of Singapore's Economic Development Board, access to a world-class business environment and a talented workforce," says Emmanuel Arene, Executive Vice President, Soitec Group Industrial Operations and CEO of Soitec Singapore Pte. Ltd. "The construction has taken advantage of the newest manufacturing technologies, as well as Soitec' s extensive engineered substrate production knowledge, gained from years of manufacturing experience."

"We are pleased that Soitec, the world's leading SOI substrate manufacturer, has chosen Singapore as its first overseas manufacturing location. Its presence creates strong synergies with Singapore's semiconductor ecosystem, and further increases the competitiveness of Singapore in the global semiconductor industry. This is a win-win partnership between Soitec and Singapore," says Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Singapore's Minister for Trade and Industry.

Built on a 2.7-hectare site, Pasir Ris 1 has more than 4,000 square meters of clean-room space. Total investment is expected to be approximately 350 million Euros at full capacity. The new fab currently employs more than 100 people. Upon the market's upturn, the fab is designed to facilitate a swift ramp, up to a final capacity of one million wafers per year and a workforce of 500 people.

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