HELSINKI, Finland – Renesas Electronics Corp., Japan's largest maker of logic chips, is expected to announce business partnership with foundry Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. for the production of chips on Monday (May 28), according to reports.
Renesas reportedly confirmed it will tie-up with TSMC (Hsinchu, Taiwan) but provided no details. The move to outsource more chip production is seen as a move to combat heavy losses made by the company.
According to The Japan Daily Press there is speculation that Renesas could be about to announce the elimination of 6,000 job, or about 15 percent of the workforce in an attempt to cut annual costs by 50 billion yen (about $630 million).
For the year ended March 31, 2012, Renesas made a net loss of 62.60 billion yen (about $790 million) on revenue of 883.11 billion yen (about $11.1 billion).
The financial year was overshadowed by the consequences of the Great Japan earthquake of March 11, 2011, which closed a number of Renesas facilities and which saw a number of automobile manufacturers facing a lack of microcontroller supply. Renesas has been working with both Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. and GlobalFoundries as strategic partners for some time and moved a lot of microcontroller production out to its "fab network."
Rather unfortunate that this is what it is coming to: the hollowing out of stalwart Japanese companies. Don't they see that another decade or so and they will be completely 'out'-foxed by the foundries.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.