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ChipMOS announces plans to acquire FICTA assets

Posted: 27 Aug 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:ic packaging? chipmos technologies bermuda? first international computer? testing and assembly technology?

Amid a major shakeout in the IC packaging and test industry, Taiwan chip packaging provider ChipMOS Technologies Bermuda Ltd announced on Aug. 24 plans to acquire the assets of another local subcontractor, First International Computer Testing and Assembly Technology Inc. (FICTA.).

The transaction is valued at about $30 million, and is expected to close in the near future after FICTA received the approval from its shareholder.

Under this agreement, the assets to be purchased from FICTA include wafer testers, final testers and assembly equipment for memory products.

"This transaction is expected to expand our capacity for the assembly and testing of memory semiconductors by 12 million pieces monthly," S.J. Cheng, chairman and chief executive of ChipMOS, said in a statement. "This is the latest example of our proven track record of successfully acquiring and transferring equipment into our operations to support customer demand in a timely and cost-effective manner. Most importantly, we will be able to ramp production in our overseas facility as we plan to transfer a portion of the acquired assets to our facility there."

FICTA evolved from FIC Group's Semiconductor Division. It has three plants, with two located in Taiwan and a third in the U.S.

It's unclear how the transaction impacts chip-packaging giant Amkor Technology Inc. In a move to expand its capacity, Amkor announced earlier this year it has acquired a 354,000 square-foot assembly and test facility from Taiwan's FICTA (see Feb. 10 story).

Still, the ChipMOS-FICTA transaction underscores a major trend in the packaging market. Heading into 2004, the industry appears to be ripe for consolidationif not a major shakeout. In fact, the sector this year has already seen one blockbuster merger between two major chip packaging houses-ST Assembly Test Services Ltd (STATS) and ChipPAC Inc. (see March 1 story).

- Mark LaPedus

Silicon Strategies

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