Intel executives have brought up the prospect of licensing chipmaking technology from outside firms, a transition which might see it exchanging manufacturing secrets with competitor Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co or Samsung Electronics Co.
Intel is one of the last remaining semiconductor company that design and manufactures its own chips, but recently its lost its manufacturing lead to Taiwanese and Korean companies.
An option advised by investors would be to outsource manufacturing. Although, according to the company, a lot of its 2023 products have been made from the inside.
Although, licensing technology might help Intel keep away from large investments in competitors’ factories that outsourcing deals would likely require.
Bob Swan, the outgoing Chief Executive told an earnings call, “Broadly speaking, that may mean sharing technologies that we have that they could use or leveraging technologies that others have developed that we can use as well.”
Currently, TSMC and Samsung are Intel’s only rivals for high-end chips but it has yet to name companies that it might possibly license.
A Berstein analyst, Stacy Rasgon said, “It seems a little weird to me that TSMC would give away to the keys to the kingdom unless there’s a sizeable payment that went with it.”