Intel Might Outsource 3nm, 5nm from TSMC as Global Foundry Race Warms Up
The American chipmaker may further fall behind its rivals and become predominantly fabless in the future.
Intel Corporation (INTC:NASDAQ) has already distributed the process of manufacturing of its new Ponte Vecchio GPU to TSMC (2330:TW, TSM:NYSE). The latter is going to make 180,000 chips at the 6 nm process nodes level by 2021. In addition, TSMC is also likely to receive Intel’s 5nm and 3nm orders. There is an ongoing discussion between the two giants, according to industry sources.
While it is too early to say whether TSMC will start massive production of advanced Intel-designed integrated circuits, some experts mention 2022 as the year of the possible involvement of the foundry on a larger scale.
Meanwhile, the mainland's top chip manufacturer – SMIC (688981:SH, 00981:HKEX) – went public on the country's tech-focused Star Market on July 16, raising in excess of USD 6 billion on IPO day. Now, the company is effectively among the five largest semiconductor foundries in the world. China's rise is apparently one of the factors Intel's top management considered before making the strategic decision of moving further towards the fabless model.
TSMC’s shares have added another 13.50% since Intel's announcement, reaching an all-time high at over TWD 430 apiece. TSMC currently owns over 40% of the chip-making cake globally; except for Samsung, it is the only possible company that Intel can outsource the chip manufacturing from.
Benefitting from the recent news, TSMC became the world’s tenth most valuable company.