Cree Inc. has agreed to sell its light emitting diode (LED) business to Smart Global Holdings Inc., a maker of memory modules, solid state storage products and hybrid solutions.
The deal, valued at $300 million, is designed to continue Cree’s transition to a pure play global semiconductor company and help accelerate shifts from silicon to silicon carbide that the company hopes will fuel high growth markets such as electric vehicles, 5G and industrial applications.
Cree’s LED business is comprised of LED chip and high-performance LED components. Smart will license and incorporate the Cree LED brand name into the Smart portfolio of businesses.
Smart said the acquisition has strategic benefits such as giving it a foothold in the LED lighting industry including general listing, specialty lighting, video screens and outdoor and architectural lighting. Additionally, Smart will get access to Cree’s customer and distribution network with more than 1,000 customers and 2,000 patents.
Smart will add the 2,000 employees from Cree’s LED workforce that includes 200 engineers, R&D, sales and marketing and management team. The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals with a target closing of the first quarter of 2021.