TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Charles Kao (高啟全), the “Godfather of Taiwan’s DRAM industry,” has left China’s Tsinghua Unigroup (紫光集團) after completing a five-year term, reports said Thursday (Oct. 1).
Kao had served as chairman of Inotera Memories (華亞科) and as president of Nanya Technology (南亞科), which is part of Formosa Plastics Group, until 2015. At the time, his departure for China was seen as a blow to Taiwan’s semiconductor memory sector.
Kao’s five-year contract as executive vice president of global operations at Tsinghua Unigroup has run its course and not been renewed, but his next move is as yet unknown, the Liberty Times reported.
Two years after Kao, the Tsinghua Unigroup also poached Sun Shih-wei (孫世偉), former vice chairman at United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC, 聯電).
The recent trade war between China and the United States could be one reason why the Chinese semiconductor memory industry has failed to take off, leading foreign talent such as Kao to leave, reports said.