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Elpida forms new joint venture to build 300mm DRAM fab in China

06 August 2008 | By Mark Osborne | News > Cleanroom

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ElpidaContinuing with its strategy to share the cost of DRAM production, Elpida Memory has formed a new joint venture with China’s Suzhou Venture Group to build and operate an 80,000wspm 300mm DRAM fab in Suzhou Industrial Park, Suzhou City of Jiangsu Province, China. “We believe it is critical to invest in the rapidly growing China market to better serve our customers,” said Yukio Sakamoto, President and Chief Executive Officer of Elpida. “This joint venture opens an opportunity for Elpida to strengthen its production and marketing profile in China and the entire Asian market. In addition, we can accomplish cost efficient investments based on shared capital expenditures and shared business risks.”

According to SVG President Lin Xianghong, “Our SVG manages specialized funds focused on the hi-tech industry, especially the fields of semiconductors and ICs (integrated circuits). We're delighted to cooperate with Elpida and believe it will be a successful investment.”

DRAM production will mainly cater for demand in China, the company said. Elpida will purchase 100 percent of the products manufactured at the fab. Hynix is the only other DRAM manufacturer with a 300mm fab in China. Elpida had until last quarter used SMIC as a DRAM foundry for the Chinese market, but plunging prices forced SMIC to exit DRAM production for both Elpida and Qimonda.

The JV is expected to be established by the end of 2008 with production starting in the first quarter of 2010 with an initial capacity of 40,000wspm using Elpida’s 50nm process technology. Full capacity was said to be 80,000wspm.

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