SEH America Inc., located in Vancouver, manufactures single-crystal silicon wafers for customers such as Intel and Texas Instruments. SEH, in conjunction with its parent company Shin-Etsu Handotai Ltd. and affiliates in Europe, Malaysia and Taiwan, is the world’s largest silicon wafer supplier.
It takes 10 days to grow and process a crystal, according to Ben Bagherpour, vice president of operations. It’s another five to six weeks to produce the wafer and a month or two more to process the wafers into chips—the electronic brains of computers, mobile phones and other devices.
SEH America gave the city of Vancouver a $1 million gift in 2009 for construction of a Japanese garden. The city asked that the garden be built on Clark College’s campus. In April 2012, the Royce E. Pollard Japanese Friendship Garden was opened, honoring the former Vancouver mayor.