The world’s biggest semiconductor foundry TSMC is keeping on pushing its limits by achieving new heights every year. In 2020, they had an amazing financial year with the 5nm process launch and keeping on increasing their 7nm node capacities.
In 2021, the market will shift more towards 5nm and focus on the development of the 3nm process as well. While the Taiwanese silicon giant invested US$17.2 billion in 2020, TSMC plans to invest around US$25 billion and US$28 billion on capital expenditures in 2021.
While 80% of this capital will be used for advanced process technologies, including 3nm, 5nm, and 7nm. Whereas around 10% will be assigned to advanced packaging and mask manufacturing technologies, and the rest 10% will be assigned to specialized technology.
However, TSMC looks to target the high-performance computing (HPC) currently dominated by AMD who solely uses TSMC’s 7nm nodes. So, TSMC cites stronger-than-expected demand for the 5nm process in 2021. Mark Liu, chairman of TSMC, said “HPC will be the key growth driver for our business. There is an exciting change happening in this area right now. Everyone is trying to get the best performance using different architectures. The number of players entering HPC is growing even more.”
Matt Bryson, senior vice president of Wedbush Securities, said in a comment to the U.S. EE Times, “Trends such as the current state of foundries, the rise of 5G (fifth-generation mobile communications) content and smartphones, Apple’s continued in-house development of ICs, and AMD’s increased share are: It justifies TSMC’s increased production capacity. These are the backings of TSMC’s increase business fixed investment. “Some of the increased capital expenditures will be allocated to 3nm development, which is also consistent with Intel’s timidity to shift some of its mainstream CPU manufacturing to TSMC.”