The Indian Express
May 19, 2022

Pune Science Weekly: MoU with Qualcomm inked, C-DAC set to play vital role in setting up India’s semiconductor startup ecosystem

C-DAC has joined hands with Qualcomm India to train semiconductor startups from this year and inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in this regard on April 29.

With an aim to strengthen the country’s semiconductor-manufacturing capacities and participate in overall development of an ecosystem for semiconductors, Pune-headquartered Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) has joined hands with Qualcomm India to train semiconductor startups from this year.

On April 29, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the regard was signed as part of which the ‘Qualcomm Semiconductor Mentorship Program’ (QSMP) has been announced.

According to experts, Covid-19 pandemic exposed India’s heavy import dependence on semiconductor and chips, with the electronics and IT industry bearing the maximum brunt of the shortfall. The crisis highlighted the need for being self-reliant in terms of manufacturing semiconductor and chips in India.

In the maiden year, 10 select semiconductor startups will be trained under QSMP. Each startup will be paired with an expert at Qualcomm India for product design development. The programme will include workshops, mentoring and masterclasses offered to the budding startups. These sessions will cover testing, design, verification packaging, non-technical areas, government regulations and policies among a range of topics.

Under the MoU, the two institutions will work on product development as required for semiconductor design in an Indian ecosystem, nurture technical and technological advancements in this field, facilitate interactions with domain experts, accelerators, incubators and industry associations towards scaling up business. The effort is also towards establishing and developing a semiconductor supply chain mechanism in the country.

Last week, during the SemiconIndia 2022 conference held in Bengaluru, Prime Minister Narendra Modi enlisted six reasons for the world to consider India as a semiconductor manufacturing hub. The Centre has also extended Design Linked Incentives (DLI) to promote startups to enter the semiconductor space.

India is all set to establish its first semiconductor manufacturing unit in Karnataka. Israel-based ISMC Analog Fab Private Limited has announced an investment worth Rs 22,900 crore towards this manufacturing plant.