Display makers dip into chips and a start-up struggles to ship


Hi everybody, that is Lauly. I’ve simply come again to Taipei from a weekend journey to the southern Taiwanese island of Liuqiu, the place I went snorkelling among the many space’s many sea turtles. It was virtually sufficient to make me neglect all of the troubles and disruptions occurring within the tech trade.

Back to actuality. This week the US Senate has lastly moved ahead on a scaled-back model of the CHIPS Act greater than a yr after the invoice was first launched. The laws presents billions of {dollars} in subsidies and tax credit aimed toward bringing chip manufacturing onshore to deal with financial and nationwide safety issues. Voting on its last passage is predicted subsequent week.

The textual content of the newest model of the act has not but been launched, however when it’s, the chip trade will scour it for any clause that may restrict their investments in China in the event that they obtain subsidies from the US.

And after all, that’s not the one factor weighing on tech trade minds. Amid a widespread slowdown in demand, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the world’s largest contract chipmaker and a barometer of the trade, has warned that it’s going to take a number of quarters for the trade to digest its stock surpluses.

Dipping into chips

Display making is a risky trade, affected by even slight modifications in demand for client electronics. Tired of this fixed buffeting, panel makers are making forays into the chip trade searching for extra secure development, write Nikkei Asia’s Cheng Ting-Fang and Lauly Li.

Taiwan’s two prime show makers, Innolux and AUO, and Chinese show champions BOE Technology Group and China Star Optoelectronics Technology Co have all fashioned groups tasked with making use of their panel manufacturing applied sciences to chip packaging and meeting.

Chip packaging is the ultimate step in making chips earlier than they’re mounted on to printed circuit boards and assembled into digital units. The technological threshold for chip packaging is decrease than for manufacturing the chips themselves.

Display makers should not alone of their efforts. Some of their most necessary suppliers, together with Corning of the US and Japan’s Asahi Glass, are investing sources to develop glass carriers, or substrates, to be used in superior chip packaging methods.

The show trade is beneath rising strain to search out new sources of development. After two years of booming demand because of the pandemic-fuelled stay-at-home economic system, client urge for food for TVs, computer systems and smartphones has dipped sharply this yr. With a provide glut and worth battle looming, show makers can’t afford to stay to enterprise as standard.

Missfresh sours

Chinese grocery supply start-up Missfresh, which raked in tens of hundreds of thousands of {dollars} from Tiger Global and Goldman Sachs, is now preventing to outlive as its money runs out and it wallows in an accounting scandal.

The Chinese group has shut operations in most of its markets in current months and desperately sought new backers to inject more money, writes the Financial Times’ Ryan McMorrow, Nian Liu and Gloria Li.

Missfresh seems to have discovered a brief salve with a Rmb200mn ($29.6m) deal final week to usher in a coal mining group as a shareholder. But the capital is not going to come low-cost: Missfresh plans to difficulty 300mn shares — equating to a 30 per cent stake — for the coal group Shanxi Donghui.

The huge dilution caps a tough yr for shareholders who have been taking a look at giant paper features when Missfresh listed in New York final June with a $3bn valuation. Its present market worth has sunk to $88mn.

The plunge marks one other soured funding for Tiger, which has been hit by losses of about $17bn throughout this yr’s sell-off of publicly traded know-how shares, marking one of many largest greenback declines for a hedge fund in historical past.

The ache might not be over both. Missfresh has been unable to publish its annual report over issues getting its auditors to log out on its financials.

Earlier this month, the corporate needed to admit that workers in a single enterprise unit had created “questionable transactions” that led to revenues being overstated by Rmb677mn within the first 9 months of final yr.

Lessons in enterprise

The US stands out as the birthplace of on-line studying, however Indian start-ups are eager to indicate additionally they know a factor or two in regards to the enterprise of edtech, Nikkei Asia’s Akito Tanaka and Sayan Chakraborty write.

Educational start-ups within the South Asian nation have outraised their American counterparts this yr by round $300mn as of mid-July. They are additionally making more and more daring inroads into the US market — Bengaluru-based Scaler Academy offered $1mn price of programs in its very first month working within the nation. Indian corporations are additionally focusing on south-east Asia, which has its personal native champions.

But irrespective of the place they arrive from, creating a worldwide model that may additionally cater to particular person markets stays a troublesome check for any participant.

Farming 2.0

Strawberries rising on the rocks. Romaine lettuce, basil and bok choy bursting from the stones. Welcome to the way forward for farming.

This visual-rich report by seven of Nikkei Asia’s proficient reporters — Lien Hoang, Rurika Imahashi, Dylan Loh, Jada Nagumo, Francesca Regalado, Pak Yiu and Cissy Zhou — explores the agricultural tech revolutionaries tackling the essential downside of easy methods to feed a ballooning inhabitants amid a bunch of challenges.

Food costs have shot up throughout Asia, hitting their highest ranges since 2011. Farmers face droughts and ice storms, rising prices of fertiliser and gas, pandemic-related labour shortages, and provide chain disruptions exacerbated by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Prices are anticipated to maintain rising. Meanwhile, Asia’s inhabitants is projected to surge by 700mn to five.3bn in 2050. Last yr, greater than 1.1bn folks within the area lacked entry to enough meals.

Pioneers within the rising area of agtech imagine that harnessing know-how can assist feed a hungry world. It is a perception that would basically change the face of agriculture. In 2022 BC, farmers cultivated vegetation that suited their location — local weather decided the crop. In 2022 AD, with cutting-edge greenhouses and indoor farms, the crop now determines the local weather.

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#techAsia is co-ordinated by Nikkei Asia’s Katherine Creel in Tokyo, with help from the FT tech desk in London.

Sign up right here at Nikkei Asia to obtain #techAsia every week. The editorial crew could be reached at techasia@nex.nikkei.co.jp

Source: www.ft.com