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© TrendForce
Analysis |

TSMC is still the undisputed foundry leader

TrendForce’s latest report reveals that in 2023, global foundry revenues hit USD 117.47 billion, with TSMC capturing a dominant 60% share.

However, as TrendForce points out, this figure is expected to climb to around USD 131.65 billion in 2024, and with that also increasing TSMC’s share to 62%. Not only is TSMC leading in revenue, but it has also strategically selected the US, Japan, and Germany as pivotal locations for its advanced and mature factories. Japan is moving at the fastest pace, with some projects even ahead of schedule.

The opening of TSMC’s Kumamoto Plant (JASM) in Japan on the 24th marks TSMC’s first manufacturing location in Japan (Fab-23), signalling a bold step into the future. Analysts at TrenForce forecasts the plant’s total capacity to hit a robust 40–50K wafers per month (wpm), focusing mainly on 22/28nm processes with a dash of 12/16nm, paving the way for the next phase of the Kumamoto expansion.

More than meets the eye – Japan's new semiconductor era

Because of companies like TEL, JSR, SCREEN, SUMCO, and Shin-Etsu, Japan has a stranglehold in the upstream sectors of the semiconductor industry, giving the country a distinct advantage going forward. TrendForce predicts that Kyushu, Tohoku, and Hokkaido will become Japan's three semiconductor powerhouses, with Kyushu emerging as the most advanced due to the presence of TSMC's Kumamoto factory. With a bold focus on the 2nm process, Hokkaido's Rapidus seeks to promote economic expansion. Through combined efforts from academics, government, and industry, Japan is about to establish a complete semiconductor manufacturing ecosystem.

As previously reported, TSMC has bigger plans for Japan than just one single fab. Earlier this year the Taiwanese foundry giant stated that it intended to build a second fab in Kumamoto. According to the current schedule, TSMC expects to break ground on the second fab by the end of this year with commercial production slated to start at the end of 2027.

During the opening ceremony of the first TSMC bab in Japan, Morris Chang, the founding CEO of TSMC stated, "I believe this fab will improve the resiliency of chip supply for Japan and the world. It will also mark the beginning of a renaissance in semiconductor manufacturing in Japan."

TSMC is looking to play a major part in this "renaissance" as it has plans for a total of three fabs in the country. Following the second Kumamoto fab, the company has plans to establish a third fab in Japan, reportedly with a focus on 6/7nm processes, which will eventually lead to 5nm or 3nm technologies.

TrendForce point out that, the competition for TSMC's third plant location is still ongoing; other Kyushu cities like as Fukuoka and maybe Osaka in the Kansai region are contenders. 


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April 15 2024 11:45 am V22.4.27-1
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