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2017's most representative eight semiconductor mergers and acquisitions inventory

By Toshiba Semiconductor & Storage

After the madness of 2015 and 2016, semiconductor mergers and acquisitions entered a relatively rational and calm stage this year. According to IC Insights, global semiconductor mergers and acquisitions reached US$72.6 billion in the first half of 2015, the highest in history. In the first half of 2016, the amount of semiconductor mergers and acquisitions was only 4.6 billion US dollars, much lower than the first half of 2015, but several large-scale mergers and acquisitions announced in the third quarter of 2016 (such as Qualcomm's acquisition of NXP and Softbank's acquisition of ARM) will be 2016. The total value of the annual merger and acquisition amount has been pushed to nearly 100 billion US dollars, only one step away from the historical record of 107.3 billion US dollars in 2015.

But by 2017, the entire market has calmed down. This is mainly because the large amount of transactions this year has been significantly lower than before. In 2016, there were 7 acquisitions of more than one billion dollars, of which three exceeded $10 billion. In 2015, there were 10 acquisitions exceeding US$1 billion, of which 4 exceeded US$10 billion. In this year, there are only two orders for over 10 billion transactions (Intel acquired Mobileye, Toshiba acquisition). This year is about to pass, let's summarize the semiconductor mergers and acquisitions in the first ten of 2017, and see what new changes have taken place in the semiconductor market.

1. The consortium led by Bain Capital acquired Toshiba memory chips

In September this year, the Toshiba acquisition, which has been entangled for nearly a year, finally settled. Toshiba said it has signed an agreement to sell the chip business to a consortium led by Bain Capital for $18 billion, which is the largest single transaction in the semiconductor industry this year.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Bain Capital, Toshiba, SK Hynix and Japan's Hoya Co., Ltd. will contribute about 960 billion yen (about 8.6 billion US dollars), while Apple, Dell, Kingston and Seagate will contribute about 440 billion yen. About 4 billion US dollars). Hynix also revealed in the statement that the consortium led by Bain (including Dell, Seagate, Kingston, Apple, Hynix) will have a 49.9% voting share in the Toshiba chip business unit, Toshiba holds 40.2%, Baoya Hoya holds There are 9.9%.

As Toshiba is the world's second-largest manufacturer of NAND Flash after Samsung, in addition to Bain Capital's investment-oriented, Dell, Seagate, Kingston, Apple and Hynix and other peer or terminal manufacturers. The shareholding is more to close the gap between yourself and the leader, or to guarantee the supply of their products.

For example, Dell, Apple and Seagate, the first two are the main consumers of NAND Flash, the latter is the hard disk manufacturer, suffering from the soaring price of NAND Flash this year, their investment is to protect their supply and price. As for SK hynix, as the second largest storage manufacturer in Korea, if it re-enters shareholder, it will create a larger NAND Flash supplier. Together with Samsung, it will further monopolize the NAND Flash market. Have a far-reaching impact.

As the seller of this single transaction, Toshiba has been trapped in the losses of the nuclear power business for the past few years. Entering this year, even facing the danger of delisting, they have only chosen to sell their extremely valuable NAND chip division. Spend the "difficulty". But for Japan, the last representative of the storage industry has lost its independence since the DRAM vendor went bankrupt.

2, Intel acquired Mobileye

This is a future transaction of a single bet.

In March of this year, semiconductor giant Intel announced that it will spend $15.3 billion to acquire the autopilot giant Mobileye.

At Intel, this is an important layout for their future "data" business. After more than 20 years of monopolizing the semiconductor industry, Intel entering the 21st century once again ushered in a new challenge. The missteps in the mobile market have made them seem to be huge and inaccessible in the past few years. Seeing Qualcomm, ARM and Samsung and other manufacturers riding the mobile device to grow rapidly. In the era of the Internet of Things and the 5G era and the era of autonomous driving, Intel seems to have found a new entry point.

On the one hand, through 3D Xpoint, back to the storage industry that once had a home; on the other hand, using Modem to enter the coveted mobile market, it is to make up for the previous losses; and betting auto-driving car is the main starting point for Intel to acquire Mobileye.

In fact, for Intel, for the now hot auto-driving cars, they can provide in-car entertainment systems, provide communication modules, and provide behind big data storage modules. Only in the "brain" of autonomous vehicles, lost in the PC. The dominance of the field, so they bought the Israeli upstart Mobileye as their partner.

Founded in 1999 by Professor Amnon Shashua of the Hebrew University of Israel, Mobileye is a supplier of vehicle safety solutions. The name of the company consists of Mobil and Eye. In popular terms, it is the eyes of the car, that is, to help the car build a visual system, identify obstacles around it, and reduce the frequency of traffic accidents. This is the beginning of Mobileye. Compared with radar and laser radar, the camera is low in cost, and the 360° viewing angle can get rich information resources, which seems to be very promising.

The camera vision system-based assisted driving tools were not able to be quickly marketed. In the initial development stage, power consumption, size and cost were not met. They insisted on 8 years before the products were officially commercialized. As the first company in the ADAS field, they also need to constantly educate the market to explain the difference between the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and the parking sensor.

Since 2007, the driver assistance system chip EyeQ chip has been installed in the car. By 2012, the EyeQ chip global deployment scale exceeded 1 million. As of 2016, 3.3 million vehicles worldwide have EyeQ series chips installed. This huge installed capacity, the amount of data brought to Mobileye can be said to have an absolute lead in the industry. Comparing Google’s own road test and accumulating data on its own, Mobileye is more efficient and practical. After finally gaining 70-80% market share, Mobileye chose to accept Intel's $15.3 billion cash offer.

For Intel, the significance of the acquisition is that Mobileye is actually a technology provider that provides high-precision maps for automated driving based on AI and image recognition technology. This can help optimize the most important driving strategies in Intel's ultimate autonomous driving program. It can also push Intel's storage and communication services simultaneously.

3. Marvell acquires Cavium

In November, chip maker Marvell Technology announced that it would acquire rival Cavium for about $6 billion to expand its network equipment business.

Headquartered in Hamilton, Bermuda, Marvell designs, develops and markets analog, mixed-signal, digital signal processing, embedded and stand-alone ICs. The company offers storage products such as solid state drives (HHD) and solid state drive controllers, as well as HDD parts such as HDD preamplifiers and motor combination drives; development software that provides silicon solutions, connectivity, including serial advanced technology accessory port multipliers, Statistical analysis system and NVMe RAID controller and converged storage processor for enterprise, data center and cloud computing services. The company also offers networking products, including Ethernet solutions, embedded communications processors, and network processors.

After the collapse of the mobile phone processor and baseband, Marvell regained its position in the semiconductor field after the new CEO's streamlining and focusing, in the field of control chips for enterprise storage and communication network equipment.

Cavium was founded in November 2000 and is headquartered in San Jose, California. Engaged in integrated semiconductor processors to support intelligent processing of wired and wireless infrastructure, and cloud networking, communications, storage and security applications. Products include multi-core processors for embedded network connections to data centers, servers and switches, storage connections, and security processors for offloading and devices. In the field of ARM server chips, they are even better.

Marvell's main products are chips for data storage devices, and Cavium's main products are communications and networking chips. This cooperation is to improve the competitiveness of Intel and Broadcom. Matt Murphy, Chairman and CEO of Marvell, also said in a press conference that "the combined company will expand and diversify our revenue base and market, allowing us to offer our customers a wider range of differentiated solutions."

4, littelfuse acquisition of IXYS

In August, US protection giant littelfuse announced that it would acquire IXYS for a total value of $750 million.

Littelfuse, Inc. and its subsidiaries are the world's leading suppliers of circuit protection products for the electronics industry, providing a variety of circuit protection measures to consumers around the world. In the electronics market, the company is a leading manufacturer of service companies including Apple, Cisco, Huawei, IBM, Intel, Siemens and Sony.

Littelfuse is also a leading supplier of circuit protection for the automotive sector and the third largest manufacturer of electrical fuses in North America. In the automotive market, the company's end consumers include major automakers in North America, Europe, and Asia, including BMW, Caterpillar, Chrysler, Ford Motor Company, and General Motors. Hyundai Group (Modern) and Volkswagen (Volkswagen).

IXYS is a world-renowned semiconductor manufacturer founded in 1983 and headquartered in California. Its products include MOSFET, IGBT, Thyristor, SCR, rectifier bridge, diode, DCB block, power module, Hybrid and transistor, etc. IXYS HiPer MOSFETs, thanks to the built-in diodes with fast recovery and good recovery characteristics, the dv/dt characteristics are improved in both dynamic and static conditions, making HiPerFETs safer in harsher conditions, so it is suitable Various inductive loads are used as switching devices.

"As the largest acquisition in our 90-year history, this is an exciting milestone for Littelfuse," said Dave Heinzmann, President and CEO of Littelfuse: "IXYS' broad portfolio of power semiconductor products and technical expertise Our strategy to accelerate our growth in the power control and industrial OEM markets coincides. The combination of Littelfuse and IXYS integrates our complementary capabilities, culture and relationships."

Dr. Nathan Zommer, Chairman and CEO of IXYS, said: "With the combination of the two companies, IXYS will serve as the cornerstone of the power semiconductor business. Both Littelfuse and IXYS have a long history of innovation and customer-focused product development. We will work together to contribute to the success of IXYS in the power semiconductor and integrated circuit markets."

"The combination of IXYS and Littelfuse has created a stronger market segment for the power semiconductor industry, leveraging our collective resources and product lines to create greater value for our customers," Uzi Sasson, President and CEO, IXYS Added. “We believe that being part of a world-class company like Littelfuse will bring a bright future to IXYS and the talents of both companies.”

The combined company is expected to have an annual turnover of approximately $1.5 billion and expand its business to a broader technology platform in the industrial and electronics markets; enhance the penetration of power control product lines in the automotive market and expand the product content per unit of vehicle

Strengthen the technological development and intellectual property rights of high-voltage silicon carbide semiconductor technology; improve its position in the semiconductor industry and increase the scale of mass production; consolidate the complementary relationship between the world's major electronic product distribution cooperation and realize a basket of sales.

5. Canyon Bridge acquires the Imagination GPU division

In September this year, Imagination, which has been in the field of image processor and Qualcomm and ARM, announced that it has accepted the offer of the private equity fund Canyon Bridge with Chinese background. After Imagination's US MIPS segment is sold at a low price of $65 million, the remainder of Imagination will be sold to Imagination for £550 million.

According to Reuters, the founding capital of Canyon Bridge comes from the Chinese central government and is indirectly related to the government's space program (space program). According to the statement at the time, the company currently manages approximately $1.5 billion in funds for the Chinese state-owned enterprise, Yitai Capital.

Imagination is a supplier of MIPS processors and GPU IP, but these two aspects are inferior to ARM acquired by Softbank last year. Especially after Apple announced that it would abandon Imagination's GPU, and the MIPS offense is not good, the British company has only chosen to split the sell.

For mainland China, the GPU technology that you can dream of, for Imagination, is to solve your own urgent needs. Absolutely win-win.

6, MaxLinear acquires Exar

Radio Frequency (RF) and mixed-signal chip maker MaxLinear said on March 29 that it will acquire IC design company Exar for $661 million in cash. According to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), MaxLinear will acquire Exar for $13 per share, according to the terms of the agreement.

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