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TSMC’s New Chairman Affirms Hopes of AI-Fueled 2024 Recovery

In Technology
June 04, 2024

(Bloomberg) — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.’s C.C. Wei, who on Tuesday became the first person to hold the dual roles of chairman and chief executive officer in years, reaffirmed expectations for AI development to drive a 2024 industry recovery.

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Wei, who was formally appointed the company chairman on Tuesday, stuck with previous projections for 10% chip market growth this year, excluding the vast memory sector. But that was a scaled-back outlook from April, when executives warned about weak smartphone and personal-computing markets.

Wei’s ascension signifies a changing of the guard at a company founded by Morris Chang and today sits at the heart of the global AI boom. TSMC remains the single most important chipmaker to Apple Inc. as well as Nvidia Corp. and SK Hynix Inc., whose components are considered critical to the training and hosting of AI services.

The move consolidates power under a single executive as TSMC expands production overseas in the most meaningful way in its nearly four-decade history. He described how TSMC was making progress in building its Arizona plant, by far the largest investment abroad. But Wei stressed that TSMC will always begin adopting the most advanced technology in Taiwan, before considering employing it elsewhere. And he pledged to stick with TSMC’s business model over the long run.

Read More: Nvidia and AMD Square Off in Fight to Take Control of AI

Wei starts his chairmanship during a week when Taiwan is in the spotlight. Many of the world’s biggest tech executives gathered at Computex in Taipei, including Nvidia’s Jensen Huang, Intel Corp.’s Pat Gelsinger and Advanced Micro Devices Inc.’s Lisa Su.

TSMC convened its shareholder meeting the same morning Gelsinger delivered his keynote speech at Computex. Executives at the forum have so far echoed Wei’s outlook for a return to solid growth after years of malaise, in part because of the AI boom.

But executives on Tuesday said TSMC won’t be initiating share buybacks or a split anytime soon, in response to a stockholder’s query. The company needs cash to make investments to capitalize on the future growth of the industry, they said.

Read More: TSMC Chair Steps Down in Power Shift at Global Chip Linchpin

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