Vedanta In Talks With Electronic Device Makers As It Looks For Buyers For Its Chips

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While Hebbar qualified these conversations as “preliminary”, he said brands such as Oppo and Vivo and some in the automotive sectors have shown significant interest in semiconductor wafers

In a bid to enter the bludgeoning semiconductor industry in the country, Vedanta Group is reportedly in talks with various electronics brands to keep a pipeline of clients ready when it rolls out chips from its soon-to-be-announced semiconductor plant in India. 

As per a report by ET, these include smartphone brands Oppo and Vivo, laptop manufacturers and electronic device makers. 

“We have started talking to customers and developing MoUs with them,” Akarsh Hebbar, Vedanta’s global managing director of display and semiconductor business division, told ET.

Vedanta had announced a JV with Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn in January for a multi-billion dollar semiconductor manufacturing plan that would draw on the Centre’s $10-billion incentive package unveiled late last year.

While Hebbar qualified these conversations as “preliminary”, he said brands such as Oppo and Vivo and some in the automotive sectors have shown significant interest in semiconductor wafers.

Although Vedanta has tied up with Foxconn, which is one of Apple’s largest suppliers, supplying chips to Apple is not the immediate target for the company since Apple phones require chips smaller in size. But Hebbar said that 28 to 22 nm nodes that they are planning to build initially will find use by other smartphone makers.

Having an end customer for its chips will also give the government more confidence as it evaluates its proposal for subsidy, sources within the government said.

He said Vedanta is hopeful that once the plant is announced and associated work commences, there will more interest from the chip consumer ecosystem, like device makers.

The group is talking to several states, including Gujarat, Maharashtra and Telangana, to set up its semiconductor plant in India.

Hebbar said Vedanta has made technical assessments of the offer made by Gujarat, Maharashtra and Telangana, qualifying them as “attractive.”

For a semiconductor plant, high-fidelity power, water supply and talent pool are crucial, which would weigh on Vedanta as it decides to set up its plant.

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