China-owned Okmetic breaks ground on 200mm wafer fab

Business news |
By Peter Clarke

China-owned silicon wafer manufacturer Okmetic Oy has broken ground at Vantaa, Finland, on a €400 million fabrication facility.

The plan to double production capacity with a fab for 200mm-diameter wafers was announced in May 2022 (see Chinese-owned wafer maker to invest $400 million in Finland).

Okmetic is the world’s seventh largest silicon wafer maker and specializes in wafers for the manufacture of MEMS, sensors, RF filters and power semiconductors. The company was acquired by the National Silicon Industry Group (Shanghai, China) in 2016.

Okmetic is one of several key European semiconductor companies acquired by Chinese operations in recent years (see China buys Swedish MEMS foundry, builds fab).

To give an indication of the significance of the fab investment Okmetic employs around 600 people and had net sales in 2021 of €128 million (about U$135 million). The wafer fab’s budget therefore represents about three times Okmetic’s annual sales. The company plans to hire an additional 500 employees over the next couple of years to staff it. Construction has started on schedule with wafer production expected in 2025.

The fab will have 6,000 square meters of clean room area within a shell of 40,000 square meters. It will focus on producing single- and double-sided 200mm-diameter polished wafers and on crystal growth. This will allow the existing to focus on silicon-on-insulator wafer production.

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