@Junko, of course nationalism matters, I have been watched closely your posts throughout the years, you have paid alot of attention of what China does on its semiconductor industry. Your ethnicity does play a role in terms scrutinzing China strategic industry closely. It's no surprise China is the number 1 spied on target of Japan throughout the years. It had spent tremendous amount of resources in watching every details of China does in aspects especially defense and strategic industries.
Now China ready to up its game and I have seen you become really concerned or even paranoid about it. You can use the excuse of protectionism all you want. And I am not surprise by all these.
Just a financial play? If it's only that then it's still intersting in that it seems premature. But what do I know. I am writing you from my place of employment, after all...and not from the corner office either.
@C VanDorne, you are absolutely right. Those Chinese companies are going backwards.
However, one thing remains ambiguous in my mind.
Even though those companies are pulled back from the stock market in the U.S., China's state-owned funds seem mighty interested in making quick RMBs by investing more in them, but quickly selling them off (doing IPOs) on the Chinese stock market. Some China hands explained to me that much of those activities we are seeing now are pure financial plays.
In the past, in China, none of the big state-owned electronics companies truly succeeded. We were beginning to notice the success of Chinese fabless companies only when many of those companies began getting founded by those "sea turtles" (Chinese engineers educated in the US who subsequently went back to China). At that time, the stock market in China wasn't mature enough. They had to come to Nasdaq to get some funding. So, yes, they did get money and also gained some exposure and great visibiliity by coming to the U.S. as private companies.
I actually have great admirations for many of those Chinese fabless companies who managed to get listed in Nasdaq. They learned to do business in a much more transparent environment -- compared to many local Chinese fabless who have never gone through this process.
But again, what remains unclear to me is what those China's state-owned funds will eventually do to those once publicly traded companies.
Look at Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Europe, and even the United States. Every place has had its fair share of government assistance before the birth of local semiconductor companies...
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., for example, would have never been born without...Samsung wouldn't be the semiconductor behemoth it is now without...Without help from the ministries in Tokyo, none of Japan's technology godzillas...
@Junko, you are truly an old-school investigative reporter and I dig your work. If only we saw from all our media the same level of curiosity and focus that you have. But isn't your comparison above actually contrast? Those companies were started with a push from their respective governments but the goal, it seems, was that after they get off the ground, they became privately controlled, competitive companies. Either Truly private or publically traded, but not government entities. And its worked out that way.
But these Chinese fabs are going in reverse, no? They were on the market as publically traded companies getting foreign capital and now they're being sucked up by the state.
Your error, or my missunderstanding aside, this trend is concerning. My question would be what did these companies gain from their short time taking foreign capital that will now be property of the Chinese communist government? Is it just money, or IP and infastructure involved too?
Agree, it's time for Govt to get involved to save Semiconductor Conductor Industry in US!! Traditionally Semiconductor Startups are funded by Venture Capatalists but the recent trend in semiconductor industry is little scary as VC's dropping (zeroing) their investments in semiconductor startups.
While other countries taking it as an opportunity and funding their Semiconductor Startups, it's not a healthy situation for US Semiconductor companies as those startups eventually become fierce competitors in the long run ( as we can clearly fore see )
In the UK I think we still have one semiconductor foundry at Plessey Semiconductor in Plymouth. They have converted this for GanLed production and it was totally private money as I said the UK government promote British business but DONT support it financially or by protectionism but the world is far from a level playing field as European companies are finding in China.
I do believe that there is a fine line between nationalism and protectionism. But for an industry like semicondcutors which does require substantial investment in infrastructure (if you are in a foundry business) to start up, traditionally, it hadn't happened withou a government's will and assistance.
Now, how long that government's help should continue is another story, though.
I still stand on what I said Britain does not protect any industry it does give one tax incentive to the creative industries for inward investment. America does defend industries although it talks about free trade, France and China openly look after their own.
Unfortunately, this nationalism/protectionism is not limited to semiconductors, it extends to all aspects of the electronics industry and other industries. All countries are guilty of similar infractions and no country is immune from the impact. In the end, when government intervenes in the market, everyone suffers.