CEO interview: SkyWater foundry hits its stride; looks to Europe: Page 5 of 5

January 27, 2021 // By Peter Clarke
CEO interview: SkyWater foundry hits its stride; looks to Europe
Two years after we last conducted an interview with Tom Sonderman, CEO of foundry SkyWater Technology Inc., we find there has been plenty of activity with more on the horizon.

Is SkyWater an essentially a US operation or could it also strike partnerships and acquisitions overseas?

"We are partnering overseas. Note our relationship with IMEC. We are looking at different corridors we can open up. Our rad-hard program can help us engage with the European Space Agency. We plan to have a strong partnership with the European Union."

We asked Sonderman to say more about how SkyWater can engage with the European Union and how quickly. Is that through the existing relationship with Infineon? Or could it be through a complementary relationship with X-Fab? Could EU engagement be related to recent renewed European focus on the strategic significance of semiconductors?

"You're correct – our ongoing relationship with Infineon stemming from our Cypress heritage is an important one. We hope to see that expand in the future as there is good alignment for various IoT and power management applications. Beyond Infineon, the EU is home to many strong global industrial sensor and control suppliers as well as automotive and even medical device and diagnostic OEMs that align well with our capabilities and value proposition. We are actively working to identify and select representative partners to accelerate plans for increasing our access to these EU markets and expect the region will be a meaningful driver of growth in the coming years."

Sonderman concluded: "Your point about the EU's strategic emphasis of semiconductors is important. Both the US and EU currently have a strong focus on strengthening microelectronics supply chains in the western hemisphere. As a US-owned and operated Department of Defense Trusted Foundry, we of course have existing strategic relationships with a number of US-based agencies – but we also feel that our business model and geographic value proposition supports EU objectives to improve supply chain transparency with robust IP security and will lead to additional powerful industry partnerships between our continents."

Related links and articles:

News articles:

SkyWater forms partnership to open US advanced packaging facility

Carbon nanotube FETs ready to compete with silicon, say SkyWater, MIT

Fabless power startup teams with SkyWater for automotive

Free chips courtesy of Google, SkyWater, eFabless

SkyWater to 'on-shore' packaging of chips in Florida

SkyWater funded to expand, develop next rad-hard process

Globalfoundries, SkyWater sign deal to strengthen US chip supply

CEO interview: Sonderman on SkyWater's technology foundry model

Infineon to swallow Cypress in a move to expand product ...

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