Bosch has announced a EUR1bn (GBP873,000,000) investment in a new semiconductor fabrication plant in Dresden, saying it was the largest single investment in the company’s history.

The plant is scheduled to start manufacturing in 2021 and will focus on 300mm wafer technology which offers greater economies of scale with up to 700 workers involved in the highly automated chip manufacturing process, working to plan, manage, and monitor production.

The Dresden plant will be Bosch’s second wafer fab in Germany (the existing one is in Reutlingen) and will help the company expand its manufacturing capacity for global markets.

Bosch has been making semiconductors for more than 45 years, and is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of chips for mobility applications.

The company claims that, in 2016, every vehicle newly registered worldwide had an average of more than nine Bosch chips on board.

In 2018, every new vehicle featured semiconductors worth GBP285 and, thanks to increasing electrification and automation, demand for chips in vehicles is expected to rise further over the next few years. By 2019, the semiconductor market will have grown at an annual growth rate of more than 5%.

Bosch’s semiconductor business is growing even faster than the market, as it is focused on making chips for vehicles. The supplier currently holds over 1,500 patents and patent applications for engineering and manufacturing its semiconductors.