Intel's former NOR flash division looks set to change hands for the second time in just over two years. Micron Technology says it's reached an agreement to acquire Numonyx for about $1.27 billion worth of stock.
The agreement will see Micron distribute 140 million of its shares to the three current owners of Numonyx: STMicroelectronics, Intel, and private equity firm Francisco Partners. Micron expects the deal to undergo regulatory review and close within "three to six months"—and it sounds pretty enthusiastic, from the look of it:
The transaction further strengthens Micron's position as one of the world's leading memory companies, with a broad portfolio of DRAM, NAND and NOR memory products and strong expertise in developing and supporting memory system solutions. Micron would also gain increased manufacturing scale globally and access to Numonyx's customer base, providing significant opportunities to increase multi-chip offerings in the embedded and mobile markets.
Numonyx came into being in early 2008, when Intel spun off its NOR flash memory business. The chip giant retained a 45% stake in the new entity and split up the rest between STMicro and Francisco Partners, which got 48% and 6% stakes, respectively.
This new, all-stock acquisition should see Intel gain a non-negligible stake in Micron. (Google Finance lists about 851 million Micron shares. Unless I'm mistaken, if Intel gets 45% of the 140 million shares involved in the stock swap, it could end up with 63 million shares, or about 7.4% of Micron.)
This wouldn't be the first tie between the two companies. As you might recall, Intel and Micron co-founded IM Flash Technologies, which manufactures NAND flash memory for both companies' lines of solid-state drives. IMFT is gearing up to mass-produce its first 25-nm flash chip next quarter.
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