It's an early news leak but it seems AMD is set to spin off manufacturing responsibilities to a new separate venture which will also assume responsibility for producing chips for other companies as well. The large plants over in Germany and other regions are apparently all part of the deal and the investment to fund this whole deal is said to be associated with the government of Abu Dhabi.
Further details about the split of power and future or name of the new company have yet to be revealed, one has to wonder if this will help the company refocus itself and get back into heavier R&D since they were already said to be experimenting with TSMC on chips, one has to also wonder how this might play in their already announced path to 45nm and if that might be a factor in the company ramping up production so fast with early samples already coming out.
We'll keep you posted as more breaks on this with any details on how this will impact road maps or any benefits coming to the company from the announcement of this change.
Update: AMD is becoming two separate entities: a design company and a silicon manufacturing company. In partnership with the Advanced Technology Investment Company, which is an investment firm sponsored by the government of Abu Dhabi (the second largest city in the United Arab Emirates), a new enterprise called the Foundry Company is being started. ATIC is committing 5.7 billion dollars (!) to the The Foundry Company over the next few years, which will go towards building semi-conductor fabs in New York state (gaining 1,400 jobs), and a new factory in Dresden (for starters). AMD's current fabrication plants will be sold to The Foundry Company. AMD and ATIC will have a joint share in The Foundry Company.
This will help AMD immediately -- they will receive 2.1 billion dollars in investment, as well as there debts being transferred to ATIC. Since purchasing ATI, AMD had had cash liquidity problems, so this will alleviate this problem. The entity of AMD will now be concentrating on designing new CPUs and GPUs.
Abu Dhabi, on the other hand, gains a big share in the global nanotechnology market. Rich from oil money, this investment will lead towards the United Arab Emirates playing a much larger part in the manufacture of semiconductors.
AMD's current executive chairman, Hector Ruiz, will become a chairman of The Foundry Company. AMD's senior vice president, Doug Grose, will become CEO of The Foundry Company.
These changes will not happen right away -- the deal will have to be approved by regulators.