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GlobalFoundries appoints new chief executive officer

In an unexpected move, GlobalFoundries, one of the world’s largest contract maker of semiconductors, appointed a new chief executive officer on Monday. Sanjay Jha, a well-respected technology executive who served as CEO of Motorola Mobility and in numerous leadership roles with Qualcomm, will now head GlobalFoundries.

Sanjay Jha will lead the company’s build out and ramp of its Fab 8 leading-edge facility in Malta, New York, supporting customers at the 14nm technology node. Today’s announcement comes on the heels of Friday’s announcement that GlobalFoundries will spend an extra $9 – $10 billion in capital expenditures over the next two years, with the investment focused primarily on the continued build out of Fab 8, the company’s most advanced manufacturing facility in New York. The contact maker of chips will also continue its upgrade of fabs in Singapore and Germany, which serve multiple customers, including Advanced Micro Devices, across a spectrum of technologies.

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“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead a company with such a strong track record in an industry that I know and love. I look forward to working closely with Ajit during the transition and with a very talented global team to continue to make our customers successful,” said Mr. Jha.

Ajit Manocha, who served as an advisor to the company’s shareholders prior to being appointed CEO of GlobalFoundries in mid-2011, will return to that role and will work closely with Mr. Jha on his transition.

“Ajit has played an instrumental role in making GlobalFoundriesthe second largest foundry in the world, delivering on customer relationships, technology leadership and operational excellence. Sanjay is one of the most respected leaders in the technology industry and has a proven track record of consistently delivering shareholder value. His industry background and experience as a foundry customer will position GlobalFoundries for continued growth,” said Ibrahim Ajami, vice chairman of the GlobalFoundries board of directors.

Kit Guru Says: Given the background of Mr. Jha, expect Globalfoundries to concentrate on chips for mobile applications on the first place. This should make the company more competitive against its arch-rival Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.

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