JUNE 4, 2009--Semiconductor manufacturer Micron Technology (Boise, ID, USA; www.micron.com) has signed an agreement to sell a majority interest in its imaging solutions business, Aptina Imaging (San Jose, CA, USA; www.aptina.com), to private equity firm Riverwood Capital and global buyout group TPG Capital.
As part of the agreement, Micron will retain a 35% minority stake in the independent, privately held company. Riverwood and TPG will also contribute significant primary capital to Aptina's balance sheet, and Micron will continue to manufacture products and provide services for Aptina at its worldwide facilities. After the transaction is completed, Micron expects to record a loss approximating $100 million in the fourth quarter of its fiscal year in connection with the sale, and Aptina's separate financials will no longer be consolidated in Micron's financial statements. The transaction is expected to be completed in the next 60 days.
"Launching Aptina as an independent business entity enables Micron and Aptina to focus on their respective core businesses while continuing to maintain a strong relationship with Micron's manufacturing and process development expertise and Aptina's product and market expertise," says Steve Appleton, Micron chairman and CEO. "Additionally, this transaction enables Micron to maintain a strategic investment in a leading company in the imaging industry."
Micron's imaging business customers have included major mobile phone manufacturers, PC brands, and automotive OEMs. Key milestones for the business unit have included developing the world's first 2.2-micron pixel architecture, 1.75-micron pixel architecture, and 1.4-micron pixel architecture; advancing in high-speed image capture; bringing high-definition capabilities to digital still and video cameras; and shipping more than 1 billion units. In the fiscal year ending August 2008, Aptina had revenue of approximately $650 million. In October 2008, Aptina became a wholly owned subsidiary of Micron.
"The Aptina opportunity fits perfectly into the Riverwood strategy of making well-capitalized investments in leading technology companies with strong growth profiles," says Michael Marks, founding partner of Riverwood. "We look forward to partnering with TPG and Aptina management to further develop Aptina as the market leader in imaging solutions."
"As one of the pioneers in semiconductor buyouts, TPG is very excited to invest in Aptina," says John Marren, a partner at TPG. "An independent Aptina will attract world-class talent, and given its strong, debt-free balance sheet, Aptina is well positioned to pursue consolidation and other growth opportunities that will further its leadership in CMOS imaging."
-- Posted by Vision Systems Design, www.vision-systems.com