SK Hynix To Form JV To Diversify Chip Business

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As part of its global expansion plan, SK Hynix said it was seeking to collaborate with other global players, including Qualcomm

South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix is diversifying its chip business portfolio for which it will invest in the joint establishment of a chip firm in the United States.

SK Group’s two other subsidiaries, SK Telecom and SK Square, will form the JV to diversify its product portfolio and expand its global business.

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The new company, SAPEON Inc, will introduce the artificial intelligence chip SAPEON, developed by SK Telecom in 2020, in the global AI semiconductor market.

The investment decision was the result of the SK ICT Alliance formed by the three companies “to jointly develop and invest in information and communication technologies and create global market opportunities”, the company said.

“Memory chips should no longer stay as a standardized commodity and evolve into more advanced chips to meet diversified demand from customers,” SK Hynix’s President and co-CEO Lee Seok-hee said during a press conference after the Consumer Electronics Show.

The three companies also plan to create and run a 1 trillion won ($830 million) fund this year to invest in the fields of AI, metaverse, chips and block chain, the company said, in order to “stay ahead of the convergence trend within the ICT industry and discover unicorns that can change the industrial landscape, which will lead to valuable business synergies”.

Partnership with Qualcomm

As part of its global expansion plan, SK hynix said it was seeking to collaborate with other global players, including Qualcomm.

“We need close collaborations with other companies to deliver innovation,” Lee said.

Park Jung-ho, vice chairman and CEO of SK hynix and SK Square, said he met with Qualcomm CEO Cristiano Amon to discuss a potential partnership in the fields of data center applications, high-speed memory for PCs, 5G business, metaverse and smart factories.

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