Launch of IC Design Park in Selangor signals ambition to move from ‘Made in Malaysia’ to ‘Made by Malaysia’

  • The IC Design Park will shift Malaysia towards front-end IC design
  • Establishing the park will position Malaysia as a global IC design powerhouse

Yong Kai Ping (left), CEO of Sidec, at the Letter of Intent signing with CK Tseng of ARM Inc (2nd left); Pua Khein-Seng (3rd from left) CEO of Phison Malaysia (MaiStorage); Fong Swee Kiang (2nd from right), CEO of SkyeChip Sdn Bhd and Zhou Shengming from the Shenzhen Semiconductor Industry Asso (right).

The Selangor State Government, through its digital economy arm, the Selangor Information Technology and Digital Economy Corporation (Sidec), is spearheading an initiative in the semiconductor sector. Collaborating with the Federal Government, leading international semiconductor firms, and venture capitalists, Selangor is launching the "Malaysia Semiconductor Accelerator & IC Design Park: Selangor Hub."

In a statement that touts this as the largest IC Design Park in Southeast Asia, Sidec said this is a strategic move to position Malaysia in the global IC Design industry with the park already securing the commitment of four partners, namely:

  • ARM Ltd
  • Phison Malaysia (MaiStorage)
  • SkyeChip Sdn Bhd
  • Shenzhen Semiconductor Industry Association

The partnership was formalised with a letter of intent, signed by Yong Kai Ping, CEO of Sidec, witnessed by Malaysian Prime Minister, Anwar Ibrahim and other cabinet members.

Yong said, “Malaysia must quickly seize opportunities in chip design to move up the semiconductor value chain as competition intensifies. The IC Design Park will elevate Malaysia closer to the front-end IC design segment from the back-end process of packaging and testing.”

According to Sidec, the collaborations will catalyse economic growth, create high-value jobs, and enhance local expertise in Malaysia, boosting innovation, skill development, and technological independence, contributing to the nation's long-term economic resilience.

Strategically located at the Puchong Financial Corporate Centre or PFCC, the 45,000 sq ft facility is poised to begin operations by July 2024. Designed to accommodate up to six local and international IC design companies with at least 300 IC design engineers, with potential expansion to 60,000 sq ft.

Facilities include affordable Electronic Design Automation (EDA) tools, servers, intellectual property (from ARM Ltd), multi-project wafer services, and training programmes. The primary goal of the park is to promote Original Design Manufacturing, encouraging local involvement in product design, prototyping, and production—shifting from "Made in Malaysia" to "Made by Malaysia."

"IC design is a capital-intensive field with a high barrier to entry. Significant funding and a highly skilled workforce are crucial for success. That's why we're taking proactive steps to collaborate with international venture capitalists and technology leaders to create a more supportive ecosystem that empowers local and global IC design companies,” Yong said.

In response to the global demand driven by geopolitical factors, the Selangor Government is also in the process of establishing the Selangor High Tech Park for the semiconductor industry in Bukit Beruntung to meet the burgeoning needs of the sector. Further details will be disclosed in due course said Sidec.


About the four partners of the IC Design Park

ARM Ltd, a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, is a key player in the global semiconductor industry. The firm specialises in providing intellectual property cores and related technologies for processors, the brains of modern electronic devices. By licensing designs to over 1,000 global partners like Apple and Samsung, ARM's energy-efficient technology enables long battery life in smartphones and tablets. However, they focus on creating blueprints rather than manufacturing chips.

Phison Malaysia (MaiStorage) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Phison Electronics in Taiwan, founded in 2000 by Pua Khein-Seng, a leading independent provider of Nand Flash controllers and storage solutions. With around 4,000 engineers, including 200 Malaysians, Phison designs storage solutions for various applications, including personal computers and smartphones.

SkyeChip was founded in 2019 by Fong Swee Kiang and is a testament to the apex of Malaysian techno-entrepreneurship, effectively transforming multinational corporation (MNC)-trained talent into a crucial national asset. Based in Penang, this startup specialises in high-end semiconductor design and excels in artificial intelligence and high-performance computing IC solutions.

The Shenzhen Semiconductor Industry Association plays a pivotal role in China's semiconductor industry, with 587 member companies and a Gross Merchandise Value of RMB160 billion in combined sales. It provides support services such as research, supply chain management, and intellectual property management.


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