China firm terminates investment plan in Western Digital

TaiwanDigi Times — Western Digital has disclosed its agreement with Unisplendour (Unis), and Unis Union Information System (Unis Union), a subsidiary of Unis that agreed to make a US$3.775 billion equity investment in Western Digital, has been terminated by Unis Union after a decision by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US (CFIUS) to conduct an investigation into the proposed investment.

Tsinghua Unigroup to build own DRAM fab, says report

China.gifDigi Times — China’s state-backed Tsinghua Unigroup reportedly plans to build its own DRAM fab and invite Micron Technology to be a shareholder of the fab, according to a report by Taiwan’s Central News Agency (CNA), which cited market rumors. The plan is also to have Micron transfer its DRAM technology in exchange for a stake in the fab, said the report.

Tsinghua Unigroup investment plans an opportunity, says Acer founder

ChinaDigi Times — Acer founder Stan Shih, in response to public controversy over China-based Tsinghua Unigroup’s proposed stake investment in three Taiwan-based semiconductor companies, indicated that the investments should be seen as opportunities rather than threats to Taiwan-based companies. Shih noted that Japan used to think China as a threat, but has changed its attitude and now sees China as an opportunity.

Tsinghua Unigroup seeking investment in SK Hynix, says report

KoreaDigi Times —- According to China’s, state-backed tech conglomerate Tsinghua Unigroup intends to buy a stake in South Korea-based SK Hynix for around CNY30 billion (US$4.7 billion). Tsinghua Unigroup offered to pay a premium to buy a 15-20% stake in SK Hynix, and occupy a portion of production capacity at a new flash memory fabrication facility SK Hynix will be allowed and financed to build in China, the Website indicated.

Western Digital and Unisplendour create Chinese datacentre storage joint venture

ChinaZDNet — Western Digital and Tsinghua University-owned Unisplendour have extended their relationship and announced the creation of a joint venture company to sell Western Digital datacentre storage arrays in China. The unnamed business will be 51 percent owned by Unisplendour and its Unissoft subsidiary, with Western Digital holding the remaining 49 percent stake.

Tsinghua Unigroup to raise CNY80 billion for memory plant and acquisitions

TaiwanDigi Times — China-based Tongfang Guoxin Electronics, an affiliate of Tsinghua Unigroup, has announced a planned CNY80 billion (US$12.59 billion) private placement project, a step toward building itself as a semiconductor giant in China. Tongfang Guoxin plans to issue 2.959 billion new shares to a number of affiliated companies under the Tsinghua Unigroup as well as its employees, said the company.

MediaTek, TSMC urge Taiwan government to ease restrictions on China investment in chipmakers

TaiwanDigi Times — The chairmen of MediaTek and TSMC both agree that Taiwan’s government should be more liberal towards the issue of allowing China-based firms to invest in the local IC industry sectors, and pursue an open policy for the local chipmakers’ cooperation with their China-based counterparts.

China investment in Taiwan IC design houses is feasible, says Acer founder

TaiwanDigi Times — In response to China-based Tsinghua Unigroup’s interest in combining its two subsidiary IC designers with Taiwan-based MediaTek, Acer founder Stan Shih said that China-based investment in Taiwan-based IC design houses is feasible as long as the investment is balanced based on appropriate stake ratios and constraining conditions such as protecting intellectual properties.

Tsinghua Unigroup expresses interest in MediaTek

ChinaDigi Times — China’s state-backed technology conglomerate Tsinghua Unigroup, which owns both Spreadtrum Communications and RDA Microelectronics, has expressed interest in merging its two chip units with MediaTek. Tsinghua Unigroup chairman Zhao Weiguo said in an interview with Taiwan’s media on November 1 that if Taiwan’s government lifts the ban on investments by China-based firms in the island’s lC design sector, Tsinghua Unigroup is willing to visit MediaTek and discuss a potential merger deal between its units Spreadtrum and RDA and the Taiwan-based company.

China’s Tsinghua to buy 25% stake in chip firm Powertech

TaiwanTimes of India — TAIPEI/HONG KONG: Chinese state-backed technology conglomerate Tsinghua Unigroup Ltd is buying a 25% stake in Powertech Technology for $600 million, becoming the largest shareholder in the Taiwanese chip packaging and testing company. The alliance, announced on Friday by both companies, is likely to help bolster the development of China’s fledgling chip industry and comes after the Chinese tech group recently hired a veteran Taiwanese semiconductor executive.

Toshiba, SanDisk reportedly among takeover targets of Tsinghua

ChinaDigi Times — Industry sources have suggested that SanDisk and Toshiba, which jointly develop NAND flash technology, are both being targeted for acquisition by China’s state-owned Tsinghua Unigroup. Unisplendor, a unit of Tsinghua Unigroup, has reached a deal to acquire an about 15% stake in storage company Western Digital. The achievement is actually part of China’s ambitions to establish a homegrown industry covering storage devices, DRAM and NAND flash memory, the sources disclosed.

Tsinghua Holdings to build RMB17bn science park in Fuzhou

ChinaWant China Times — Tus-Holdings, an affiliate of China’s leading semiconductor group Tsinghua Holdings, has partnered with the city government of Fuzhou for a total investment of 17 billion yuan (US$2.7 billion) to build a science park, which aims to be an incubation of high-tech development as well as talent training, our Chinese-language sister paper Commercial Times reports.

Inotera chairman reportedly to be hired by Tsinghua Unigroup

TaiwanDigi Times — Rumors have been circulating in Taiwan’s semiconductor industry that Charles Kau, who works both as Inotera Memories chairman and Nanya Technology president, will be hired by China’s Tsinghua Unigroup to support the establishment of the region’s DRAM industry sector. Kau will be appointed as executive VP of Tsinghua Unigroup’s global operations, and will be responsible for the development of China’s home-grown DRAM technology and production capacity, according to the rumors. Kau will also help build a competitive talent pool for China’s DRAM sector.

China’s top university invests $3.8B into US hard drive maker

China.gifTech In Asia — China’s prestigious Tsinghua University is investing a whopping US$3.8 billion into hard-drive maker Western Digital, reports Bloomberg. It’s China’s biggest ever tech investment in the US. It tops the US$1.75 billion that Lenovo paid for IBM’s PC division in 2005, as well as last year’s acquisition of IBM’s server business by Lenovo for US$2.3 billion.

The Man Behind The Move On Micron: A Q&A With Tsinghua Unigroup’s Zhao Weiguo

ChinaForbes — Two years ago China’s Tsinghua Unigroup was nothing more than an obscure state-backed company peddling scanners and herbal medicine drinks. But a reported deal to buy U.S. chipmaker Micron Technologies for $23 billion has brought it into the spotlight. Tsinghua Unigroup, 51% owned by state-run Tsinghua Holdings, is still in talks with Micron, despite the steep national security concerns the deal faces.

Tsinghua Holdings to invest RMB30bn in smartphone chips

ChinaWant China Times — State-owned company Tsinghua Holdings plans to invest around 30 billion yuan (US$4.67 billion) in developing smartphone chips over the next few years, hoping to compete with major players Qualcomm and Taiwan’s MediaTek, reports our Chinese-language sister paper Want Daily.

China and the Global Semiconductor Space Are Consolidating

ChinaMarket Realist — So far in this series, we’ve looked at Tsinghua’s offer for Micron Technology and changing China’s semiconductor landscape through strategic acquisitions. However, it isn’t just China’s semiconductor space that’s seeing a lot of M&A (mergers and acquisitions). It isn’t the only country that’s going through a consolidation phase. In the last couple of months, a lot of mega deals have happened in the semiconductor sector around the globe.


Hong Kong Mobile OS Company Aims To Beat Android, Apple

Hong KongChina Tech News — The freshly-minted Hong Kong-based mobile operating system company Acadine Technologies is hoping to make room for itself among the ubiquitous of Android and iOS devices. The company says it received USD100 million in its first round financing from China-based Tsinghua Unigroup International.

Unlikely Tsinghua-Micron merger would spell trouble for Taiwan

TaiwanA Taiwanese industry leader said Tuesday that Taiwan’s semiconductor industry will be seriously affected if the Tsinghua Group in mainland China succeeds in merging with Micron Technology, an American company that is a world leader in memory and semiconductor technology.

Intel investments in Tsinghua may benefit China over processor development

Intel has signed a contract with China-based Tsinghua Unigroup and will invest CNY9 billion (US$1.5 billion) in the company. Sources from PC players believe China is looking to acquire some of Intel’s technologies through the cooperation and will use these technologies to improve its China-designed processors, while Intel is looking to expand its presence in the China market. Digitimes Research previously estimated that if Spreadtrum enters the x86 ecosystem, the vendor may outsource its chip manufacturing to Intel.