Huaxintong Semiconductor, a joint venture between the Guizhou government and US chipmaker Qualcomm, is reportedly shutting down by the end of April.
Employees of the joint venture were informed today of the shareholders’ decision to dissolve the company, according to The Information.
The joint venture, which was founded in Guizhou in 2016 with Qualcomm taking a 45% stake, was a poster child for Guizhou’s ambitious transition from a rural province to a high-tech manufacturing base.
Huaxintong has a chip design research and development center in Beijing, a chip production facility in Shanghai, and a chip packaging complex in Guiyang.
The cooperation between Guizhou and Qualcomm had received “keen attention” from the country’s top leadership, according to Guizhou Daily. Chen Miner, then the party chief in Guizhou and a close ally of President Xi Jinping, had personally invested time and efforts to advance the joint venture.
As China is determined to develop its own chips, the reasons behind this semiconductor design workshop’s shutdown are not immediately clear. Huaxintong started mass production of a homegrown commercial chip, the StarDragon 4800, late last year.