TSMC has three 300 mm fab complexes in Taiwan. Fab 12 is in Hinschu and contains 5 separates phases (P1, P2, P4, P5 and P6). Fab 14 is in Tainan and it comprises P1, P2, P3, P4 and P5, with P6 under construction. Fab 15 is in Taichung and it comprises 2 operating phases(P1 and P2) and 2 more under construction (P3 and P4). If one counts Fab 12 P3 which is a 200 mm fab converted to 300 mm, it comes up to 14 operational and 17 prospective. Round up and you get 20.
TSMC only has three 300 mm fabs (12, 14, 15), and their list is still short of 20, so I don't know he is counting, unless it is just hyperbole.
As a one-time customer of TSMC, I was convinced that part of their secret sauce was a highly disciplined production work force. Reproducing that in another country might be a challenge. In fact, they probably have a sense of that challenge from their fabs and JV's in the US, China and Singapore.
We have 20 fabs in Taiwan, and that’s an advantage because when a machine goes down in one plant we can ship one over from another. You can’t do that for a fab in the US.
You really think it's smart to have 20 fabs packed on an island like Taiwan?
The last major disruption was about 15 years ago - they did not learn from Japan did they.
As we unveil EE Times’ 2015 Silicon 60 list, journalist & Silicon 60 researcher Peter Clarke hosts a conversation on startups in the electronics industry. Panelists Dan Armbrust (investment firm Silicon Catalyst), Andrew Kau (venture capital firm Walden International), and Stan Boland (successful serial entrepreneur, former CEO of Neul, Icera) join in the live debate.