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FormFactor shifts jobs to Asia

Posted: 21 Apr 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:semiconductor? layoff? Asia job? manufacturing?

FormFactor Inc. has slashed its headcount by about 106 employees and announced plans to continue to shift U.S. jobs to Asia. The reduction in force is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2011. The probe-card company has recorded a restructuring charge in connection with the plan of approximately $3.6 million in Q1 2010, which is associated with one-time severance benefits.

The company also expects to record further charges of approximately $1.1 million in the second through fourth quarters of fiscal 2010 associated with retention bonuses. A substantial portion of the charges associated with the reduction are expected to result in future cash expenditures and are expected to be paid out in Q1 of fiscal 2011.

"This reduction in force initiative represents a continuation of our global regionalization strategy to place more decision-making in regions close to our semiconductor customers and strengthening our local design, application, and service capabilities to improve customer responsiveness and enhance our relationships with our customers," said Mario Ruscev, FormFactor's CEO, in a statement.

"Toward these goals, we are moving from Livermore to Korea and Japan certain assembly and test operations from our back-end manufacturing processes and are bringing up and plan to qualify our back-end manufacturing operations in Singapore in the third quarter of fiscal 2010," he said. "This reduction in force initiative is intended to result in a lower manufacturing cost, a simplified manufacturing process and decreased cycle times for our customers."

Not long ago, FormFactor was a star in probe cards. More recently, the company has been hit hard by the ATE downturn.

It has seen a string of losses, layoffs and management changes. There has a string of product miscues.

Seeking to cut costs amid losses, FormFactor recently announced the official opening of its new wafer probe card manufacturing facility and global business center in Singapore.

Last year, the Delaware Bankruptcy Court has approved of FormFactor's acquisition of intellectual property rights and certain technology assets of Electroglas Inc. related to precision motion control automation.

- Mark LaPedus
EE Times

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