Chinese Chip Maker With a Hand in Crypto Mining Plans $2.8B IPO

Tuesday 02 June 2020, 9:31 AM AEST - 3 months ago

China-based Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC) aims to raise fresh capital in a bid to further develop its chip-making technologies. (Credit: Shutterstock)China-based Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC) aims to raise fresh capital in a bid to further develop its chip-making technologies. (Credit: Shutterstock)

Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC), one of the largest computing chip producers in China, plans to raise $2.8 billion through an initial public offering on the Sci-Tech Board of the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE).

The exchange has accepted SMICs application, according to a document filed Monday with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX), where it is already listed. The company said part of the proceeds will be focused on developing 14nm chips, which will be used for crypto mining.

The move comes just two months after the company announced a partnership with crypto miner maker Canaan Creative. The two companies plan to develop a mining machine for an undisclosed cryptocurrency with a relatively small market cap, rather than bitcoin due to current technical limitations.

SMICs chip-making capabilities still lag behind Bitmains major chip supplier, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), as well as Samsung, which works closely with Whatsminer and MicroBT. For example, Samsung has announced its intention to mass-produce 8nm chips in the first quarter, while TSMC is developing 5nm chips.

Founded in mainland China in 2000, SMIC could be one of Chinas best hopes to advance its chip-making technologies and become less dependent on manufacturers that have deeper connections with the U.S. government amid increasing tension between the two countries.

Strong support from the Chinese government can put SMIC on the fast track to catch up with its competitors. The company has received substantial financial windfalls since the U.S. put forward new restrictions that could limit chip-makers such as TSMC and Samsung from manufacturing chips for Chinese tech conglomerate Huawei.

The Sci-Tech ...

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