As reported a while back, Intel is going to announce the site of its first major foundry in the EU in the coming days. With an initial investment of $20 billion and an overall inflow of $100 billion in the next ten years, this campus will serve as one of the key drivers of the chipmaker’s IDM 2.0 initiative. As per a French outlet (link at the end), Intel has chosen Germany as the key site of its European venture, with Italy and France likely to get an R&D and/or packaging plant.
The source claims that the announcement is about to come in the coming weeks. The exact location of the foundry has supposedly not been finalized, with Dresden and Munich being the primary options. The facility in Germany is set to start construction early next year and will start mass production in 2024. Intel’s 4nm (earlier 7nm) wafers will likely be fabbed at this fab complex to reinforce the supply of Meteor Lake and its succeeding lineups.
Intel plans to build advanced foundries on US soil are already in full swing. Team Blue’s Arizona fab is being expanded, with the construction of fabs 52 and 62 underway for an overall sum of $20 billion. These advanced facilities are slated to begin production of 4nm wafers by 2024 to bolster the supply of next-gen Meteor Lake and Granite Rapids processors.
In addition to the Arizona fab, the chipmaker has also invested $3.5 billion to upgrade its New Mexico foundry to improve advanced packaging capabilities. Intel plans to build its third major foundry complex for a whopping $100 billion. We’re talking about a 1,000-acre site, a mini-city of sorts with its own colleges, universities, schools, etc. The end goal of all this investment is to restore the US as a major producer of semiconductors. From 37% in 1990 to 12% today, America’s manufacturing industry has rapidly surrendered to the growing influence of Taiwanese/Chinese firms, most notably TSMC.
At present, Intel’s primary fab in Europe is in Ireland. The company has already expressed that it won’t be building a new facility in the UK as it’s not part of the EU. Plans to build massively advanced foundries in Europe have surfaced multiple times with Italy, Germany, and France being primary candidates. The overall scale of the investment remains unknown, but as per rumors, it’ll be around $95 billion. This indicates a total of 6-8 foundries on the site capable of producing several thousand 4nm-class wafers per month.