Ex Tata Electronics CEO P Raja Manickam Starts Fabless Semiconductor Startup iVP Semi

Tata Electronics
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In March, Tata Electronics began construction on its ₹91,000 crore semiconductor fabrication facility at the Dholera Special Investment Region in Gujarat. The company is also establishing a ₹27,000 crore Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test (OSAT) facility.

On Saturday, semiconductor industry veteran and former CEO of Tata Electronics OSAT, P Raja Manickam, launched a new fabless semiconductor startup, iVP Semi, focused on localizing design and chip production. “We have good chip design companies. Tata is also coming up with a chip manufacturing (fabrication) facility. What we need are product companies that can put this together and build products, which is what iVP will do,” said Manickam, CEO of indiaVP Semiconductor.

Currently, the space is crowded with players like SD Micro, Infineon, OnSemi, Nexperia, and Texas Instruments, none of which are Indian companies. “There are no major Indian players in this space because we didn’t have chip manufacturing (fabrication),” Manickam noted.

In addition to the facility in Gujarat, Tata Electronics is also setting up a ₹27,000 crore OSAT facility in Morigaon, Assam, while the Murugappa Group’s CG Power and Industrial Solutions has initiated construction for its ₹7,000 crore OSAT facility in Gujarat.

“We will buy wafers from Taiwan, Japan, and Korea. We will get the packaging done in India once Tata and CG Power start their operations. We will do the testing at our end before selling to end consumers,” Manickam added.

Semiconductor manufacturing involves several stages, including design, fabrication, OSAT, and electronic design automation. Fabless companies like iVP Semi specialize in the design stage, creating semiconductor chips but outsourcing manufacturing to foundries. Qualcomm and NVIDIA are examples of fabless semiconductor companies.

Manickam stated that iVP Semi will initially focus on providing chips to the power sector, including renewable energy, battery storage, and transmission needs. “Grids are increasingly becoming smart grids, so there are huge opportunities for the electronics market in this space,” he said, estimating the total addressable market in the power sector could be $3.5 billion.

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