Tacoma, Chinese Image Sensor Fab, Went Bankrupt

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Technode reports that "in July, Dekema (AKA Dekoma, Decoma, Tacoma), a Nanjing-based chipmaker backed by the local government, announced it was bankrupt because of “financial difficulties” in raising additional funds from investors. The Nanjing company previously received $3 billion from investors including the Nanjing municipal government."

Nanjing local web site China Business Network publishes photos of the abandoned image sensor fab and talks about the project history:

"The second phase of the project is a 12-inch wafer fab, with an investment of US$2.3 billion and a designed monthly capacity of 20,000 12-inch wafers. The main product is its own brand image sensor. The above-mentioned economic development zone staff stated that the reason for agreeing to cooperate with Dekema is that it has the support of foreign-funded enterprises and that it has the corresponding technical capabilities. What it lacks is only capital.

However, it is worth noting that the so-called technology of Decoma was also purchased from foreign companies. The first to be included in the bag by Deco code is the relevant process authorization of the CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) sensor purchased from STMicroelectronics. Then they bought related patents and technology licenses from ON Semiconductor. Later, a chip design company was established in Japan, and the original Japanese Toshiba CMOS image sensor design and R&D team was recruited.

Nikkei reports that TowerJazz too has been involved in Dekema (Tacoma) project: "TowerJazz didn't contribute any cash to the project but was contracted as a technical consultant. Tacoma paid TowerJazz $30 million under a technology license agreement. TowerJazz also promised to purchase as much as 50% of Tacoma's targeted 40,000 wafers a month."

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