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By | Jack Clark 10th July 2014 21:11

Things that make you go hmm: GlobalFoundries hires ex-IBM chip fabber

There are rumours it'll buy Big Blue's chip plants

A former IBM exec who oversaw chip fabrication has been hired by GlobalFoundries, the company that's rumored to be buying IBM's chip fabrication wing.

Henry DiMarco, a longtime Big Blue employee, has moved to GlobalFoundries as vice-president of site construction and facilities, to help out on the construction and "infrastructure strategy" of its Fab 8, according to a GlobalFoundries company announcement seen by The Register:

DiMarco joins GLOBALFOUNDRIES from FALA Technologies in Kingston, N. Y. Previous to his role with FALA, DiMarco built his career at IBM, where he held a number of progressive engineering and leadership positions in locations around the globe. From 2000 to 2013, DiMarco served as senior location executive for the IBM East Fishkill campus where he was responsible for the design, construction and facilities operations for the IBM 300mm fab.

Fab 8 is being built near Albany, New York. Construction began in July 2009. "The full build-out of the Fab 8 campus will create the world's most advanced semiconductor production facility, supplemented with development centers for all aspects of next-generation semiconductor technology," GlobalFoundries stated on its website.

IBM retained global investment bank Goldman Sachs in February of this year to help it explore a sale of its semiconductor division. Yesterday, the New York Times reported GlobalFoundries is the expected buyer of the chip churners. GlobalFoundries, through its Fab 8 plant, has had close ties with IBM.

Big Blue, meanwhile, is investing more than $3bn in fundamental semiconductor research and development over the next five years as it hopes to develop new chips which, in all likelihood, it hopes to license out rather than make itself.

GlobalFoundries also hired John Painter, formerly of Intel, as senior director of facilities for Fab 8. Painter will run day-to-day operations at the site. Neither IBM nor GlobalFoundries returned requests by El Reg for further information at the time of writing.

Given the rumors of the biz deal, DiMarco is a perfect hire to help GlobalFoundries understand manufacturing facilities at IBM. ®

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