America’s billionaires are behind a campaign to revive US chip technology

The American newspaper “The New York Times” reported that a group of billionaires in America have set up a fund to finance deep technology.

The paper added that the group – called the “Americans Frontier Fund” – includes the billionaire, former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt, and co-founder of the PayPal billionaire Peter Thiel, and not only finances the efforts themselves, but wants to have that U.S. taxpayers should help pay the bill.

Late last month, the White House commissioned the fund to lead the Quartet Investors Network, which describes the White House as an “independent consortium of investors seeking to advance access to capital for critical and emerging technologies” across the United States, Japan , India and Australia, the newspaper said.

Gilman Lowe, CEO (an executive director of the CIA-backed investment fund NQ-Tel and a well-known face in Washington) was recently appointed to President Joe Biden’s intelligence advisory board.

The New York Times report indicated that the group raised eyebrows and asked: What do billionaires want? Will they direct government dollars to the companies in which they invest, or will they benefit from it?

“I’m not sure what this organization can accomplish, and the U.S. government cannot do it on its own,” said Gaurav Gupta, an emerging technology analyst at industrial research firm Gartner.

“As all our national security committees have made clear, government, industry, academia and philanthropy must work together if we want free and open societies to lead the next wave of innovation for the benefit of all,” Schmidt told the newspaper. The US Frontier Fund is an important bridge in this endeavor. “

Intel made less revenue than South Korean rival Samsung in semiconductor manufacturing (Getty Images)

First car benefit

The report says that the supremacy of the United States in the global innovation race it led in the twentieth century is at stake, and the reason is – largely – due to the breakthroughs made in the field of American chips, and it is attributed to industry experts that taking any action will enable China to achieve first place in technology.

And Edlin Levin, a quantum physicist and one of the founders of the fund, was quoted as saying that America is losing its grip in the current trajectory, adding that in 2020 America was only responsible for 12% of global semiconductor manufacturing. . That year, South Korean electronics giant Samsung’s revenue exceeded that of US chipmaker Intel.

And in 2021, Intel did the unthinkable, announcing that it would outsource more production to Asia, especially to Taiwanese semiconductor manufacturing. An approach that some have questioned amid supply chain struggles during the pandemic, and which some say led to the departure of Intel CEO Bob Swann at the time.

Pat Gelsinger, who replaced Swan, took more than $ 43 billion from the company’s board last year to build new chip manufacturing plants, including a $ 20 billion investment in two new plants in Ohio. U.S. President Joe Biden cited these developments as examples of how to boost U.S. manufacturing and revive local economies as he strives to reclaim the No. 1 chipmaker title.

The report said that progress in this effort has stalled due to measures that help fund these efforts. Last year, Congress passed the law to create beneficial incentives for semiconductor manufacturing, but it remains unfunded as lawmakers discuss the details of a bipartisan innovation bill that will save more than $ 50 billion for semiconductor manufacturing efforts, including the type of technology development that fund hopes “Americans Frontier Fund” investment in it.

In a speech last month, a frustrated Biden urged lawmakers to “pass the damn bill,” and White House spokesman Michael Gowen said: “The president was clear when he said we did not have a moment to do not lose. “

The report noted that building chip manufacturing capacity is clearly a priority for America, and that the people who support the fund have the experience and deep connections to drive jobs on Washington and Wall Street. But if this public-private effort can restore industrialization in a country that has long relied on Asian factories, it will require more than a slight shift in broader business operations and many state dollars.

The group’s founders say they are committed to the mission, whether they receive federal funding or not. “We do not need the government to give us permission to save the country, but it will be great if they help us. , ”Lowe said.

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