TSMC takes patents out to cover LED business

Giant Number One Foundry TSMC will license light emitting diode (LED) patents from Dutch outfit Philips to ensure that everything goes nice and smoothly when it opens its LED fab later this year.

That, at least, is the view of the Taiwan Economic News, although TSMC has several of its own patents pending and appears to be suggesting that Philips – well known to be a giant in light bulbs and the like – will be a customer.

TSMC has been moving in the last 18 months or so to diversify its business – it wants to be big in the photovoltaic market too. Its LED factory will start production in the first quarter of next year, according to the Economic News.

The Taiwanese giant will brand its LEDs, the report said, and has set aside nearly $6 billion to grow the LED and PV business it wants to dominate.

Currently, the number one LED player in Taiwan is Epistar. You can find the Economic News speculation, here.