A Comprehensive System to Lower Inventory and Supply Chain Costs for Chip Manufacturers

Feature Enablement Capability Offers Significant New Revenue Opportunities

Certicom’s new Asset Management System is a comprehensive infrastructure solution designed to help semiconductor companies manage, secure and control manufacturing processes in a global, outsourced manufacturing environment. Some of these processes include timely, secure and reliable capture and reporting of multi-point yield data, virtual SKUing, secure key injection and anti-counterfeit protection.

Certicom Asset Management System delivers the potential for dramatic new yield improvement benefits for semiconductor manufacturers, in particular those companies that outsource chip manufacturing to the global supply chain. In addition, the system can improve manufacturing operations, deliver strong brand protection and open up impressive new sources of revenue. Finally companies can rest easy that their valuable intellectual property is both managed and strongly protected as it goes through the many steps of out-sourced production in this new global manufacturing environment.

When a semiconductor chip is fabricated, it typically goes through more than 25 different points in the chip development lifecycle, including processing, testing and packaging – often involving many different vendors.  Tracking a chip’s development through the entire supply chain is extremely complicated and detection of chip failures, theft and grey-market losses usually occur near the end of its development process, if ever.  This can waste millions of dollars since test time is becoming the dominant fabrication cost, and since grey-market/counterfeit products cause both increased warranty costs and loss of revenue.

Certicom AMS attacks many of the manufacturing vulnerabilities inherent in the global, outsourced supply chain. By eliminating waste, bringing new control to chip set capabilities, and protecting designs throughout the process, AMS delivers immediate savings and revenue enhancement capabilities.

Dramatic Savings Through Yield Improvement
When implemented across the worldwide supply chain Certicom’s AMS can deliver yield improvements that can be worth millions of dollars in savings to manufacturers by eliminating much of the waste associated with processing and further testing of defective chips. Analyzing and improving yield requires accurate and timely reports from all stages of the manufacturing process. As multiple contractors are often involved, they often deliver yield reports in different ways and on their own schedules. Certicom addresses this challenge by tracking individual die across the manufacturing process in real time.

Dynamic Control of Chip Features
The AMS system also delivers flexible new manufacturing capabilities to OEMs, including just-in-time feature provisioning. This is done by allowing semiconductor manufacturers to establish a chip’s feature set, or SKU, dynamically, after fabrication. The chip’s SKU can be assigned at any point from chip test to board assembly or even at the end customer.

True Asset Protection
In addition, AMS has strong, new anti-cloning, anti-grey market protections. These capabilities both potentially save money while opening up new revenue sources for manufacturers. Many semiconductor companies experience revenue and margin losses due to chip cloning and theft. These issues can be eliminated because AMS allows critical functionality of the chip to be disabled and enabled only where the semiconductor company allows. The enabling process can be broken down into steps along the manufacturing process to ensure an authorized flow from vendor to vendor. Using Certicom’s AMS allows the manufacturing company to maintain full control during the entire chip lifecycle.

Exciting New Revenue Opportunities
Many markets allow semiconductor vendors to extend their brand directly to end users. Giving end users an opportunity to upgrade, enhance or change the feature set of their products while in the hands of customers can open up exciting, new revenue opportunities. Certicom AMS delivers the ability to roll out advanced features to consumer products more rapidly – and securely capture new revenue for those features.

Certicom Asset Management System Appliances

Certicom AMS consists of a network of hardened, manufacturing-ready appliances controlled and operated by the semiconductor company.  AMS appliances communicate directly to an Asset Control Core, a root of trust that is a small and efficient engine that manages the silicon and software features on the chip.  Certicom’s system also features the Asset Management System Controller that creates, distributes and controls use of Feature Control Tickets.

The benefits of Certicom Asset Management System are powerful, immediate and have a high impact on the bottom line. Costs are reduced through dramatic yield improvements, IP and brand are protected through secure chip protection, and revenue can be impressively grown through new feature enablement. Certicom AMS is field proven and in use by large, global manufacturers today. The benefits of the system are clearly demonstrable. Isn’t it time that you explored the many ways Certicom’s AMS can start saving you money and growing your revenue line? Contact us at sales@certicom.com today!