It is rumored that SMIC received a mature process license, Liang Mengsong did not leave, and another independent non-executive director resigned

Recently, there has been a lot of uproar about the change of high-level personnel at SMIC. Co-CEO Liang Mengsong handed in his resignation due to the arrival of the new vice chairman Jiang Shangyi. The latest news shows that Liang Mengsong is still on the list of directors of the company, but Cong Jingsheng, another executive independent non-executive director, resigned in view of the recent concerns of the United States on the company.

It is rumored that SMIC has obtained a mature technology license, and it is difficult to tell whether the news is true or false

Another piece of news about SMIC has attracted more attention. It is reported that SMIC has obtained a mature process license.

Not long ago, SMIC was included in the “Entity List” by the U.S. Department of Commerce for “military involvement”, which means that SMIC’s future purchases of products and technologies from U.S. semiconductor companies will be restricted.

Regarding this result, there is no fluctuation in the market’s evaluation of SMIC at present. Morgan Stanley still maintains SMIC’s rating in a recent report, saying that the company’s performance in the next 3 to 6 months will not be affected. effect, it can function normally.

Although there will be no problems in the near future, in the long run, SMIC’s business will depend on the export approval of process technologies above 10nm in the United States.

As for processes below 10nm, it was pointed out in a statement issued by SMIC:

SMIC confirmed that after being included in the “Entity List” by the United States, for products or technologies that are applicable to the U.S. Export Control Regulations, suppliers must first obtain an export license from the U.S. Department of Commerce before supplying them to SMIC;

For products or technologies used in 10nm and below technology nodes (including EUV extreme ultraviolet lithography technology), the US Department of Commerce will adopt a “Presumption of Denial” policy to review; SMIC provides foundry for some special customers Services may also be subject to certain restrictions.

SMIC said that its preliminary assessment shows that the company’s operations and financial conditions will not be significantly adversely affected in the short term, but the research and development and production capacity construction of advanced processes of 10nm and below will have a significant adverse impact.

According to the latest news, the Science and Technology Innovation Board Daily, Jiweiwang and other media reported that SMIC’s key supply of mature processes has been licensed, and the licensed parts include EDA, equipment and materials. Some media asked industry insiders for confirmation and learned that the news is true.

However, another industry media SMIC also exclusively reported the news, saying that an insider of a well-known equipment manufacturer in the United States learned that its company has not obtained a license to supply mature process equipment to SMIC. The same information was also obtained from an insider of another well-known US equipment manufacturer.

Therefore, whether SMIC has obtained a mature process license is still a mystery to be solved.

OFweek Electronic Engineering Network has learned that at present, SMIC has not disclosed any relevant news or announcements about “licensed mature technology”. According to common sense, major matters related to the advanced manufacturing process of domestic semiconductor chips, if the news is true, it will definitely be disclosed in the announcement.

Notably, according to Reuters, index provider FTSE Russell said it may move more Chinese companies out of global indices. FTSE Russell’s move may stem from the Trump administration’s 28th tightening of an executive order banning U.S. investment in Chinese-funded companies accused of having military backgrounds.

Just two weeks ago, on December 16, according to the Wall Street Journal, MSCI said it would remove the stocks of Chinese companies mentioned in Trump’s November 12 executive order from its Global Investable Market Index (Global Investable Market Index). Market Indexes). The executive order bars Americans from investing in 31 Chinese companies that the United States says support China’s military, intelligence and security services. Index compiling agencies such as MSCI have said they will review the blacklist.

MSCI will remove these stocks after the market closes on January 5, including SMIC, China Communications Construction, China Railway Construction, CRRC, China (Dongfanghong) Satellite, Hikvision and Sugon.

As the largest chip foundry in China, SMIC ranks fifth in the world in terms of market share (2020 Q1 data). Although it is far behind the leading companies, it belongs to the latecomers after all. Moreover, SMIC is the only mainland company in the top five, which is also a very good result. It can be said that domestic semiconductors have to rely on SMIC for the right to speak in the field of chip manufacturing. Today, the existence of “entity list” restrictions will undoubtedly have a serious impact on the subsequent development of the domestic semiconductor industry.

Liang Mengsong is still there, and Cong Jingsheng resigns

Judging from the latest announcement from SMIC, it is mainly related to personnel changes.

Liang Mengsong, who had previously been dissatisfied with Jiang Shangyi’s arrival and wanted to resign, is still the co-CEO position. However, another senior executive, independent non-executive director Cong Jingsheng, resigned from his position with effect from December 31, 2020 in view of the recent US concerns about the company.

This move will result in the number of SMIC’s independent non-executive directors being lower than the relevant regulatory requirements, and the board of directors will appoint new independent non-executive directors within three months.

According to the latest announcement of SMIC’s “List of Directors and Their Roles and Functions”. The members of the board of directors of SMIC (the “Board”) are set out below:

Executive Directors: Zhou Zixue (Chairman), Jiang Shangyi (Vice Chairman), Zhao Haijun (Co-CEO), Liang Mengsong (Co-CEO), Gao Yonggang (CFO)

Non-executive directors: Chen Shanzhi, Zhou Jie, Ren Kai, Lu Jun, Tong Guohua

Independent Non-Executive Directors: William Tudor Brown, Liu Zunyi, Fan Renda, Yang Guanglei

(SMIC announcement)

About Cong Jingsheng

SMIC previously submitted a prospectus for listing on the Science and Technology Innovation Board, showing that Dr. Cong Jingsheng (American) has been a director of SMIC since February 14, 2017.

Dr. Cong received his bachelor’s degree in computer science from Peking University in 1985, and his master’s and doctorate degrees in computer science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1987 and 1990.

Dr. Cong’s research areas include electronic design automation and energy-efficient computing. Dr. Cong has published more than 500 papers in this field and won 15 Best Paper Awards, three 10-Year Most Influential Paper Awards, and the 2011 ACM/IEEE A. Richard Newton Electronic Design Automation Technology Achievement Award.

He was elected an IEEE Fellow in 2000, an ACM Fellow in 2008, and a member of the National Academy of Engineering in 2017.

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