United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) has acquired all of the shares of Mie Fujitsu Semiconductor Limited (MIFS), a 300 mm wafer foundry that was a joint venture UMC and Fujitsu Semiconductor Limited.
As part of the acquisition, UMC will gain 84.1 percent of Fujtisu’s shares in MIFS in a transaction valued at about $520.1 million. The transfer of ownership is expected to be completed in early January 2019, pending government approval.
In 2014, UMC and Fujitsu formed an agreement that would see UMC take a 15.9 percent stake in MIFS through progressive phases. Since that time, the two companies have continued to work together with UMC licensing its 40 nm technology and the establishment of a 40 nm logic production line in MIFS. After several years of joint operation, both companies agreed to integrating MIFS into UMC, as the latter pure-play foundry has a broad customer portfolio, enhanced manufacturing experience and extensive technology offerings that will maximize MIFS’ values to stakeholders.
MIFS will continue to provide foundry services and details of distribution after the transaction will soon be determined as will the renaming of the company.
“UMC is experiencing high demand from mature 12" processes. With new applications in 5G, IoT, automotive and AI requiring these technologies, we anticipate the market conditions driving this demand to remain strong for the foreseeable future,” said Jason Wang, co-president of UMC. “The acquisition of a fully qualified, equipped, and volume production proven 12" facility provides greater time and ROI advantages compared to building a fab from scratch, which would cost several billion dollars and several years to construct and equip.”
Wang said the Japan-based MIFS will help UMC further diversify its manufacturing risk while at the same time provide a stable and uninterrupted source of supply for automotive chips for its automotive suppliers.