Samsung: from fruit exporter to the 2nd largest chip manufacturer #makerbusiness

CNBC did a great piece recently which recounts the history of Samsung. Its rise to prominence is remarkable and itself a masterclass in successful business and longevity.

Just a decade after making its first memory chip, Samsung was coming to market with a version that had 1,000 times the capacity. It gained international acclaim in 1992 with the world’s first 64MB DRAM chip, placing the company squarely in first place in memory, where it remains today.

“Its presence is so ubiquitous in South Korea that they call their country the Republic of Samsung,” said Geoffrey Cain, author of the book “Samsung Rising,” published in 2020.

Yet from the point of view of Samsung, they are not quite where they want to be. They sit in second place, just behind TSMC as the largest chip manufacturer in the world.

“We do not settle to be No. 2,” said Jon Taylor, Samsung’s corporate vice president of fab engineering, in an interview. “Samsung is never satisfied with No. 2 as a business, as a company. We’re very aggressive.”

The company announced an ambitious new road map in October, pursuing a goal to triple capacity of leading-edge manufacturing, and to make industry-leading 2-nanometer chips by 2025 and get them down to 1.4-nanometer by 2027.

Intel is in a similar push for the top, with both companies having to spend a lot to catch TSMC. This is a race to watch closely. In the meantime though, learn more about Samsung here!

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