Texas Instruments Buys Its First Chip Factory in China

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Texas Instruments announced the purchase of its first chip factory in China on Friday.

It bought the factory in Chengdu from Cension Semiconductor Manufacturing Company. The 120,000 square foot facility can generate more than US$1 billion in annual revenue from the production of 8-inch (200-millimeter) wafers, the company said. The Cension purchase also includes another factory, 134,000 square feet, reserved for future production needs.

"This important milestone puts manufacturing close to the company's growing customer base," TI said in a statement.

The factory will produce analog chips for TI customers in the area.

TI has been on a chip factory buying spree for the past few years, snapping up cheap factories from struggling companies in the U.S., Japan and Germany. The company bought advanced chip factory equipment in the U.S. from Qimonda after that DRAM maker filed for bankruptcy protection. In Japan, TI bought two chip factories from Spansion Japan after that company filed for bankruptcy protection.

TI said the purchase in Chengdu shows its commitment to China.

TI representatives did not return calls requesting details of the purchase, including cost and the kind of technology it will use in the factories. Factories making chips on 8-inch wafers typically use older production technology. More modern chip factories produce chips on 12-inch (300mm) silicon wafers.

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