Friday, July 30, 2010

SiGe Semiconductor Files for IPO

A few highlights from the SEC S-1 filing:

Revenue:
  • Last quarter revenue of $20.69M at 37% GM at net break-even.
  • In fiscal 2009, Hon Hai, Promaster, USI, Nintendo and RichPower accounted for 27%, 18%, 15%, 15% and 14% of revenue respectively.
Largest shareholders:
  • Prism Venture Partners - 19.8%
  • W Capital Partners - 11.2%
  • The VenGrowth and Vengrowth II Investment Funds - 15.5% collectively

GT Solar Acquires Sapphire Producer Crystal Systems

MERRIMACK, N.H.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--GT Solar International, Inc. (NASDAQ: SOLR) ("GT Solar"), a leading global provider of polysilicon production technology, crystalline ingot growth systems and related photovoltaic manufacturing services for the solar industry, today announced that it has acquired privately-held Crystal Systems, Inc. Crystal Systems is a crystalline growth technology company that manufactures high-quality, large area sapphire substrates used in the LED, defense, medical and aerospace industries.

“Crystal Systems’ sapphire process knowledge complements our expertise in silicon growth technologies and we believe this combination will allow us to quickly deliver products that leapfrog sapphire crystallization technology available from other suppliers,” said Tom Gutierrez, GT Solar’s president and CEO. “We expect to capitalize on the attractive opportunities we have identified in equipment, LED, and high tech specialty markets that require high-quality, low cost crystalline substrates. Crystal Systems has a rich history of innovation and we believe the combination of their technical expertise supported by our proven global operating experience and available capital resources will accelerate the adoption of new low-cost, high-quality crystalline sapphire solutions.”

Founded in 1971, Crystal Systems is recognized for its innovations in crystal growth technology and is a leading supplier of sapphire and Ti:sapphire material. Crystal Systems leverages its proprietary and complementary crystal growth and process knowledge to produce large sized, high-quality sapphire products at competitive prices. Crystal Systems’ development and manufacturing operations are located in Salem, Massachusetts. Fred Schmid, founder of Crystal Systems and the inventor of the Heat Exchanger Method or HEM process, will be joining GT Solar in a senior technical capacity to further accelerate the commercialization of this technology.

Industry analysts project that the LED market could grow up to a 40 percent compound annual growth rate over the next several years driven by increased sales of products such as flat panel televisions and commercial and residential lighting. Sapphire is the most widely used substrate for this fast-growing market.

Under the terms of the agreement, the purchase consideration consisted of approximately $24 million in cash, 5.4 million shares of GT Solar common stock and a $21 million cash earn-out. The cash earn-out provision is based on the attainment of certain financial and technical targets. Crystal Systems is a profitable company with expected revenues of approximately $16 million for the 2010 calendar year. The company will positively contribute to GT Solar’s operating income over the next 18 months and is expected to be accretive on an EPS basis by year end FY12.

GT Solar management will discuss the acquisition during its Q1 FY2011 earnings conference call, which is scheduled for 8:00 a.m. eastern time Thursday, August 5. The call will be webcast live and can be accessed by logging on to the "Investors" section of GT Solar's website, www.gtsolar.com. The call can also be accessed by dialing 866.770.7146 or 617.213.8068 (International). The telephone passcode is SOLR.

About GT Solar International, Inc.

GT Solar International, Inc., based in Merrimack, NH, USA, is a leading global provider of polysilicon production technology, multicrystalline ingot growth furnaces and related PV manufacturing services for the solar industry. The company's products and services allow its customers to optimize their manufacturing environments and lower their cost of manufacturing. For additional information about GT Solar, please visit www.gtsolar.com.

Monday, July 26, 2010

NXP Acquires Jennic

EINDHOVEN, NETHERLANDS--(Marketwire - July 26, 2010) - NXP Semiconductors today announced its acquisition of Jennic, a leading developer of low power RF solutions for wireless applications in smart energy, environment, logistics and consumer markets. The acquisition will see Jennic's state-of-the-art portfolio of 802.15.4 and Zigbee low power RF solutions integrated across a wide range of NXP's High Performance Mixed Signal products. Together, this provides NXP with a comprehensive wireless semiconductor platform for emerging technologies including eMetering, smart lighting, building automation, asset tracking and device remote controls.

Integrating complementary short-range wireless technology from Jennic will immediately expand NXP's RF product portfolio, meeting increasing market demand for low power RF solutions. NXP paid approximately $12.2 million to acquire 100% ownership of Jennic shares, plus up to $7.8 million in additional consideration over the next two years if Jennic meets certain performance targets. Approximately 50 UK-based employees will transfer to NXP. NXP's worldwide distribution channels and leading customer base will allow Jennic's short-range wireless products to become available to a broader range of global customer, increasing scale and opportunities for its low power RF range.

"Innovation in low power wireless RF technology is driving significant demand for exciting new applications and usage models across a broad range of industries," said Rick Clemmer, President and CEO, NXP Semiconductors. "The low power RF solutions for wireless applications which Jennic has developed have set a benchmark for driving down power performance. These also represent a great example of High Performance Mixed Signal technology, which together will enable us to jointly target attractive growth markets and offer a complete range of wireless semiconductor solutions."

With leading levels of low power consumption and a full suite of robust 802.15.4 technology, including software stacks for Zigbee PRO, 6LowPAN and RF4CE, Jennic's offering proves ideal for applications requiring low installation and maintenance costs with a high degree of flexibility, scalability and ability to be reconfigured. As low power RF technology increasingly replaces wired solutions for narrow-band communications, Jennic's complete range of transceivers, chips, modules and protocol stacks are designed to meet growing demand for smart grid and metering, smart lighting networks, home and building automation and consumer remote controls solutions.

"We strongly believe that 802.15.4 short-range wireless technology has potential to both enable a number of new applications, and replace traditional communications across a range of industries," said Alexander Everke, Executive Vice President and General Manager, High Performance Mixed Signal business unit, NXP Semiconductors. "The benefits of networking technology with low set-up and operation costs are significant, and by integrating Jennic's solutions, we are now able to offer the broadest range of long- and short-range wireless platforms to meet any customer requirement."

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Mirics secures additional $13M funding to fuel company growth

San Jose, USA - July 13th 2010: Mirics, the software-based broadcast TV receiver pioneer, today announced that it has secured $13M in additional funding with existing investors - Acacia Capital Partners, Intel Capital and Pond Ventures – all participating in this latest financing round. This additional funding will enable Mirics to grow its market share for its ground-breaking Mirics FlexiTV solution, targeting a wide range of consumer devices and PC platforms.

By addressing globally and nationally diverse TV and radio broadcast standards, Mirics is continuing to grow its customer base for its software-plus-silicon FlexiTV platform. In parallel, there is a growing industry trend for integration of broadcast TV functionality in notebook, netbook and desktop PCs; FlexiTV delivers the lowest-cost means to integrate a multi-standard broadcast receiver into such mass-market consumer products worldwide.

Simon Atkinson, CEO, Mirics, said: “Securing this financing during the current global economic conditions reinforces the continued confidence and support we receive from our investors. This investment will enable us to further capitalize on the current industry demand for broadcast-enabled consumer devices using our FlexiTV solutions and increase our resources to support our growing customer base.”

Marcos Battisti, Managing Director, Intel Capital, commented: “Mirics’ investment team have all been very impressed at its recent multiple successes in securing new business across a diverse customer base. This new funding will enable Mirics to continue building its commercial growth and maintain its leadership position in software-based global broadcast receivers.”

About Mirics
Mirics provides total system solutions for converged wireless connectivity on portable consumer electronic devices such as Notebook PCs, Media Players and Cellphones. The initial focus of the company is the delivery of free-to-air broadcast services and content to portable computing and communications devices. With development, support and sales operations in USA, UK, Hong Kong, China and Taiwan, Mirics has brought together a strong team with extensive experience in delivering high performance integrated circuits and algorithmic IP into high volume wireless, broadcast and cellular applications. www.mirics.com.