Nvidia rumored to be opening a second R&D center in Taiwan — and it has plans for an AI supercomputer on the island

Nvidia office at Sta. Clarita
(Image credit: Nvidia)

Several Taiwanese news outlets have reported on the possibility of Nvidia opening a second AI research and development center on the island. The company set up its first AI Innovation R&D center in Neihu, Taipei in 2022. Now a rumor is circulating that the green team will work with Foxconn to build a second research center in Kaohsiung Software Park, in the south.

Taiwan Television reported that Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang arrived early for Computex 2024 for a meeting with TSMC leadership and other key supply chain leaders. There were also whispers that he met with Taiwan's new President, William Lai, to talk about a second R&D center in Tainan or Kaohsiung.

While we don’t have any confirmation yet, this could be a possible answer to AMD’s recently divulged plans to open an R&D center in Taiwan. These developments may be quite surprising, as Taiwan is currently at the center of the US-China chip war, to the point that TSMC, the island’s top corporation, has equipped a remote self-destruct function to its factories in case of war.

It still makes sense for companies to build research and development centers in Taiwan, though, especially as it makes 90% of the AI servers deployed around the globe. Setting up near major suppliers, like TSMC, could make logistics easier and streamline operations.

However, Zhou Chongbin, the Deputy Director of the Industrial Technology Department says that Nvidia currently has just one AI R&D center in Taiwan, and that there are no official plans, or ongoing talks, regarding a second one. According to the Commercial Times, Chongbin said that Nvidia is slated to build the ‘Taipei-1’ AI supercomputer in Kaohsiung, which is not an R&D center. The R&D center rumor might thus be a simple misinterpretation of the plans to build Taipei-1 with Foxconn.

But even if the talk about a secondary Nvidia research center news may not be substantiated yet, Taiwanese officials are already happy to hear that the company is considering more inward investment. And with the AI boom fueling Nvidia’s growth, it’s not farfetched for it to invest in another facility to help the company grow even further. After all, Nvidia has to put its money somewhere after hitting record results in 2023 and 24Q1 amid the surge in demand for GPUs.

Freelance News Writer
  • JTWrenn
    Far too much tech that close to a nation just chomping at the bit to take it over. Wonder if it could be distributed a bit by offering Taiwan rights in countries to spread out the hit if Taiwan is ever attacked? Doubt they would go for it, but need to spread things out. Hell we should do it just from the stand point of possible terrorism or natural disaster, let alone a world war starting event.
    Reply
  • Notton
    JTWrenn said:
    Far too much tech that close to a nation just chomping at the bit to take it over. Wonder if it could be distributed a bit by offering Taiwan rights in countries to spread out the hit if Taiwan is ever attacked? Doubt they would go for it, but need to spread things out. Hell we should do it just from the stand point of possible terrorism or natural disaster, let alone a world war starting event.
    I think the R&D center would heavily depend on if the researchers there can speak fluent English or not.
    If you send the R&D team outside of Taiwan, you either have to hire different people, who may not be up to the task, or potentially move entire Taiwanese families.
    Reply
  • williamcll
    JTWrenn said:
    Far too much tech that close to a nation just chomping at the bit to take it over. Wonder if it could be distributed a bit by offering Taiwan rights in countries to spread out the hit if Taiwan is ever attacked? Doubt they would go for it, but need to spread things out. Hell we should do it just from the stand point of possible terrorism or natural disaster, let alone a world war starting event.
    Look at how much hassle TSMC went through to get fabs in Texas, if it wasn't for more red tape Nvidia would have expanded further within mainland china
    Reply
  • FoxtrotMichael-1
    williamcll said:
    Look at how much hassle TSMC went through to get fabs in Texas, if it wasn't for more red tape Nvidia would have expanded further within mainland china
    I do just want to point out that the Samsung plant in Texas has released serious contaminants into local waterways numerous times and doesn't want to pay the bill to clean it up, even though they've taken a lot of state funds to expand here. The "red tape" these companies run into frequently isn't a big deal, they just aren't used to being held accountable for their actions because countries in the east have a completely different perspective on things. Want to do business with the US consumer? This is going to mean doing business with the morality we expect. Onshoring is here to stay and our economy is only going to get more decoupled and self-reliant from here. If these companies don't want to play ball the way that we expect then they can go away and will be replaced over time.
    Reply