AMAT adds VC firm Francisco, pitches for ASMI’s entire frontend biz

June 17, 2008 – A day after its $400M-$500M offer for ASMI’s ALD/PECVD units was rebuffed — but with an asterisk — Applied Materials has pitched a new proposal: buying all of ASMI’s frontend business activities, with help from Francisco Partners.

The offer now places an initial value on ASMI’s remaining frontend businesses at $225M-$300M, plus AMAT’s original $400M-$500M offer for the ALD/PECVD activities.

ASMI said in a brief statement that it would internally discuss the offer “and its implications” — essentially it would trim the company down to just its profitable Singapore-based backend business — and would respond “in due course,” with no date specified.

In deconstructing the original offer, Gartner analyst Dean Freeman told WaferNEWS that ASMI selling just its ALD and PECVD businesses didn’t make sense for the company — it would leave just ASMI’s furnace business in the frontend sector, a very competitive arena with low margins, he noted.


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