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(Nikkei BP Group)

(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)

  • LG Semicon to Bolster Microchip Foundry Business
  • November 20, 1998 (SEOUL) -- LG Semicon Co., Ltd. will focus on the silicon foundry business as a mainstay of its semiconductor business, in addition to the dynamic random access memory (DRAM) sector.
    The Korean IC company seeks to obtain 30 percent of the overall value of its business from silicon foundry operations by 2002, Nikkei Microdevices learned.

    The silicon foundry business offers outsourcing services for manufacturing of microchips designed by other companies. This business eliminates the risk of capital investments for a semiconductor manufacturer, because the producer does not need to develop or market the microchips.

    The global silicon foundry business is expanding mainly through Taiwan-based semiconductor makers.

    LG Semicon said it has been building an infrastructure for the silicon foundry business since the beginning of 1998.

    The microchip company is converting its process technologies obtained through DRAM production into a system-on-a-chip business while also building up a user-friendly design environment, company officials said.

    Also, LG Semicon will supply customers with a cell library free of charge.

    As for its intellectual property, LG Semicon is increasing a line for ARM, a popular microprocessor core, and other chips. LG Semicon plans to offer a Java processor, which it has been developing, as an IP product, the company officials added.

    The company said it hopes to retain an edge over Taiwan's silicon foundries because its process technologies are fostered through large-scale DRAM production. Although DRAM chips and logic IC chips require different technologies, the production lines of DRAM chips also can make logic chips. That's because both technologies share the same fundamental infrastructures, the company officials noted.

    (Nikkei Microdevices)

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    Updated: Thu Nov 19 15:45:30 1998 PDT