US chip giant Intel is expanding its business collaborations in China by establishing a Chip innovation hub in Shenzhen. The initiative aims to build connection between local startups and international partners.
The Santa Clara-based chip giant and the Nanshan district government in Shenzhen, a technology hub in southern China, launched the Intel Greater Bay Area Innovation Centre on July 29. Its main focus is on technological development and support in fields such as artificial intelligence, chip application development, edge computing, and technology transformation.
"In the past few years, even during the pandemic, we have been consistently engaged in one thing: promoting Chinese customers' products and solutions to customers worldwide," said Gao Yu, General Manager of Intel's China Technology Department. "During overseas exhibitions and Intel's own events, we facilitate meetings and assist Chinese customers in negotiating with international customer - this is what we call 'going out.' And when it comes to 'bringing in,' Intel also takes on a role in introducing foreign customers to solutions when they come to mainland China for procurement."
"I hope that this place can become the first stop for global buyers when they come to Shenzhen. When they come to Shenzhen, the global hardware hub, to procure various computing devices, they won't need to go to other electronics markets. They will come directly to the Greater Bay Area Innovation Center. Here, we have a wide variety of product forms," said Gao Yu. "If the buyers show interest in specific solutions, the Innovation Center can provide them with the contact information of the solution providers, ultimately facilitating matching transactions."
As part of the center’s partnership, Intel has formed strategic partnerships with six prominent local tech companies, including Ugreen, a gadget manufacturer, as well as Senary Technology Group and Chipsea Technologies, both fabless integrated circuit firms. These collaborations were officially announced during the launch event. As part of the agreement, the companies will establish several joint laboratories with a focus on research in various domains, such as low-carbon and energy-efficient IT solutions, PC and server chip development, and advancements in smart transport technologies.
The establishment of the new innovation center come two weeks after Intel introduced a specialized processor specifically designed for training artificial intelligence (AI) systems. This processor adheres to the necessary requirements for export, allowing it to be sold to Chinese clients.
The demand for advanced AI chips in China has surged due to restrictions imposed by the US on semiconductor sales to the country. Consequently, access to popular graphic processing units (GPUs) like Nvidia's A100 and H100 has been cut off for many in China. As a result, Intel's new offering is seen as a significant opportunity for local customers seeking alternative AI solutions.