The plant is to be known as Fab 7 and construction is due to begin in the spring of 2021. It will be built in cooperation with Western Digital, a continuation of its 20-year partnership with SanDisk and then Western Digital. While investment is joint the exact proportions were not disclosed.
However, Kioxia has also decided to postpone a previously announced initial public offering, which could have raised cash to pay for the fab.
Fab 7 is be built on the north side of Yokkaichi campus in two phases. The first phase of construction is scheduled to be completed by spring of 2022. Kioxia said it plans to fund the construction of Fab7 from its operating cash flow. Kioxia said it would boost production capacity by using a manufacturing automation system that uses AI.
With regard to the IPO Kioxia said it will continue to evaluate the best timing for its offering.
“While we received significant interest from many investors, the lead underwriters and Kioxia do not believe it is in the best interest of current or prospective shareholders to proceed with the IPO at this time of continued market volatility and ongoing concerns about a second wave of the pandemic,” said Nobuo Hayasaka, CEO of Kioxia, in a statement. “We are not in a rush,” he added.
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