India took the first step towards self-reliance in electronics manufacturing with a venture capital firm all set to invest Rs. 700 crore in a chip-making facility. Mumbai-based Next Orbit Ventures — formed to invest in semiconductor projects — will soon invest in one of the two consortiums interested in setting up massive chip-manufacturing facilities in the country.
“We would be investing Rs. 700 crore in one of the two fabrication units immediately. Once the fabs receive a letter of commitment from the government, we’ll invest more,” Ajay Jalan, Managing Partner at Next Orbit Ventures, told BusinessLine. Fabs are facilities where semiconductor devices are manufactured. “We intend to invest in the first digital fab in Gujarat for a total project cost of $5.6 billion and the first analog fab for a total project cost of $1 billion,” Jalan said. The cost of developing analog semiconductors is lower than that for digital semiconductors. The formal contract signing is expected to take place before the month-end.