Electronics: Merck relies on data platform to combat chip shortages

Merck relies on data platform against chip shortages

In view of the shortage of chips, Merck wants to create a new platform for data analysis. Photo: Arne Dedert / dpa

© dpa-infocom GmbH

The lack of chips is a burden on the industry. The Darmstadt-based Merck Group now wants to react to the crisis – and improve data analysis.

In view of the shortage of chips, the Darmstadt-based Merck Group wants to create a new platform that will improve data analysis in the semiconductor industry.

For this, the existing partnership with the US data analysis company Palantir will be deepened, as the Dax company announced on Tuesday. Together, the two companies want to provide a platform that will make the supply chain more transparent, accelerate market launches and thus counteract the shortage of chips. Merck technology boss Laura Matz is to become CEO of the platform that bears the name Athinia.

Platform for increasing efficiency

The platform will enable semiconductor manufacturers and material suppliers to exchange, aggregate and analyze data with one another in order to increase efficiency, explained Merck. In addition, it should provide industry players with a deeper understanding of the interactions between materials and processes in production systems for semiconductors.

“The semiconductor industry is facing unprecedented upheavals,” said Kai Beckmann, who heads the Electronics division at Merck. Companies needed a data platform that would give them the transparency and data intelligence they needed to cope with the chip shortage and problems in the supply chain.

Merck entered the electronic materials business for the semiconductor industry in 2019 with the multi-billion dollar takeover of the semiconductor supplier Versum. Merck plans to invest well over three billion euros in its electronics division by the end of 2025. The group benefits from the supply bottlenecks in semiconductors. Chips are particularly scarce in the auto industry. Chip companies are therefore expanding their production, and the demand for materials is correspondingly high.


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