Stewart Randall, the Head of our Electronics Practice, has just been with our Taipei team at Semicon Taiwan – the world’s biggest semiconductor expo.
They were there to help manage a mission of UK semiconductor pioneers, arrange match making meetings with Taiwanese companies and host an evening reception, as well as to see the latest trends in the industry in Asia.
Over to Stewart for the highlights …
So, Semicon Taiwan 2023 has just closed. As every year, the world’s entire semiconductor industry appears to converge in one place for a hectic few days of introductions, business discussions and deal making.
Spanning three huge halls and multiple conferences, it truly is the place to do business if you’re a semiconductor firm with global expansion ambitions.
The significance of the event is partly explained by the dominant role the semiconductor sector plays in the Taiwanese economy.
It’s staggering to realise it makes up around 30% of Taiwan’s GDP. And the Taiwanese government clearly understands this, welcoming new technologies and demonstrating great willingness to introduce international companies to potential customers, partners and investors in the country.
Semicon Taiwan is also unlike other international semiconductor trade shows as it has much more than purely an industry equipment focus.
The event attracts companies from across the entire semiconductor manufacturing supply chain – from front-end and back-end equipment firms to materials suppliers, component vendors, automation solution companies, software firms, wafer suppliers, distributors and compound semiconductor businesses.
And, on the floors of the show, you bump into senior executives, engineers and sourcing personnel alike from all the major foundries and OSATs, as well as investors, analysts, journalists and pretty much every other industry stakeholder you can imagine.
Britain’s biggest showing
There are always UK firms at the expo, alongside those from every other country around the world with a strength in the sector. But this year stood out as Britain’s biggest ever showing.
It was the first time the UK had its own pavilion. And it was the first time there was an evening reception for British firms.
We were proud to have helped manage these as part of the UK-APAC Tech Growth Programme we’re delivering – funded by the Department for Business & Trade – to help British firms expand in Asia Pacific.
And both proved highly successful as platforms for UK and Taiwanese semiconductor companies to get together, learn more about each other and lay solid foundations for future cooperation.
UK businesses attending this year included wafer fabs and firms in semiconductor materials, silicon IP, equipment and EDA tools, amongst others.
All that I spoke to said they gained a deeper understanding of the Taiwanese semiconductor industry and the opportunities it presents.
They also felt they’d increased their exposure to the market, deepened partnerships with Taiwanese firms, gained fruitful business leads – and some even negotiated some orders.
Rae Hyndman, CEO of Scotland-based Clas-SiC Wafer Fab, told us: “This was our first time to Semicon Taiwan, and we found it extremely useful. We already have Taiwanese customers, but this increased our connections and helped us gain new leads.”
Kevin Huang, VP of APAC Sales at IQE, said: “We were delighted be part of the UK's Department for Business & Trade delegation to Semicon Taiwan, enabling us to reconnect with customers and gain new connections within the industry.”
And Lisa Yang, Crypto Quantique APAC Sales Director, commented: “Although Semicon Taiwan is a manufacturing-focused event, it was still helpful for us. Intralink's understanding of the semiconductor ecosystem and supply chain helps UK companies to enter the local market. Intralink also helped with meeting arrangements during Semicon and facilitated business relationships between companies.”
Take a look at our short video showing some highlights from the show.
If you weren’t able to attend, this should give you a good feel for what it was like – and I’ve no doubt will encourage you to go next year.
So, Taiwan has a vibrant semiconductor sector and, given its clout internationally, partnering with Taiwanese firms can be an effective stepping stone – not just into Taiwan but onto the global stage.
And, as you can sense from our video, Semicon Taiwan is at the heart of that sector and a great place to make new connections and nurture the relationships to grow your business.
If you’d be interested in being part of the British delegation in 2024, get in touch with Tom Miller, our UK-APAC Tech Growth Programme manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org