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© hannu viitanen dreamstime.com Business | February 18, 2015

Cricket Semiconductor to set up an analog wafer fab in India

US-based Cricket Semiconductor has signed a memorandum of understanding with the government of Madhya Pradesh in India for an analog fab proposed to be set-up in the state.
IESA (India Electronics & Semiconductor Association), an Indian trade body representing the Indian ESDM (Electronic System Design and Manufacturing) industry provided a strategic roadmap to the company for locating the proposed unit in the country. The industry body is also helping Madhya Pradesh for their investment promotion initiatives. The proposed investment is expected to be USD 1 billion to set up an analog wafer fab in the country.

The creation of this fab ecosystem coupled with the products and systems value chain is expected to create close to 450'000 new jobs, making a potential future economic impact of USD 40 billion, over its project life span and reduce electronics import burden for the nation.

Cricket Semiconductor is a US-based company focused on the creation of a specialty foundry in India. Their goal is to establish India's first high-volume, globally competitive production wafer fab.

Madhya Pradesh recently approved the ‘Analog Semiconductor Fabrication [FAB] Investment Policy’ that provides for free government land, reimbursement for the cost of building the shell of the manufacturing unit, 24X7 power supply from two separate power grids and quality water supply at the doorsteps of the FAB units at an internationally competitive price fixed for 10 years. With this new policy, the state government will extend support to any fab investment that exceeds USD 500 million in the state.

“India has a large and fast growing electronics market. A specialty wafer fab focused on analog/power semiconductors is well suited to catalyse the Indian Electronics System Design and Manufacturing (ESDM) ecosystem. We are confident that we can establish a high-volume, globally competitive specialty wafer fab in India. We are thankful to IESA for their strategic insights and support for this project and help in finalizing the MoU with the Government of Madhya Pradesh towards making this a reality," said Lou Hutter, CEO, Cricket Semiconductor.

“This project differs fundamentally from typical wafer fab projects in several ways. The project outlay, at around INR 6000 crores (USD 1 billion), is less than less than 1/10th of a leading edge digital fab. The emphasis will be on processes and technologies that align to Indian as well as global requirements such as industrial and automotive. Importantly, the cost of analog / power semiconductor product development is significantly less than digital semiconductor products. This lowers the investment entry barrier for Indian entrepreneurs to bring innovative products to the market, stimulating the ESDM ecosystem and leading to the creation of many thousands of jobs,” he added.

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