GlobalFoundries unveils Penang Hub to oversee global semiconductor operations

Semiconductor manufacturer GlobalFoundries Inc (GF) has inaugurated its new hub facility in Penang, Malaysia, aimed at supervising the company’s worldwide operations. The move signifies GF’s commitment to ensuring uninterrupted support for its manufacturing sites across the globe, including those in Singapore, the United States (US), and Europe.

Chief Manufacturing Officer Ang Kay Chai explained that the Penang facility would provide round-the-clock support, allowing GF to maintain the resilience and sustainability of its supply chain on a global scale. The company intends to utilize resources from Penang and Bangalore to remotely oversee factory operations and support its worldwide facilities, 24/7.

GF Malaysia’s office is part of a strategic hub network that complements its advanced manufacturing facilities worldwide. It leverages the latest digital manufacturing technologies, including remote access, Industry 4.0 solutions, and GF’s state-of-the-art factory control tower (FCT). The FCT, a US$1 million investment, plays a pivotal role in the hub’s operations.

GF plans to invest up to US$7 million over the next three years for the training of engineers and technicians at the Penang facility. Currently employing about 300 engineers and technicians, GF is open to hiring an additional 500 to 600 if demand continues to rise. The company envisions potential expansion, with the possibility of growing to six floors.

The decision to establish the hub in Penang was influenced by the region’s pool of semiconductor talent and its reputation as a hub for semiconductor manufacturing innovation. The COVID-19 pandemic prompted GF to explore virtual factory operations, making them pioneers in setting up remote hubs.

In attendance at the facility’s inauguration, Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow expressed anticipation for the knowledge-sharing and skill transfer in artificial intelligence and machine learning, which will further automate semiconductor manufacturing processes. The semiconductor industry is poised for significant growth, expected to reach a value of US$1 trillion by 2030.

GF, with a presence in 15 global locations and approximately 13,000 employees worldwide, operates manufacturing fabrication plants in the US, Germany, and Singapore, serving more than 250 customers across the globe.