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IQE targets high-growth markets

12 Oct 2009

Acquisition of NanoGaN complements IQE's existing wireless, opto and solar businesses.

IQE, a global supplier of advanced wafer products and wafer services to the semiconductor industry, has acquired UK-based NanoGaN Limited for an initial fee of £0.4m. A further consideration of up to £3.2m (in shares or cash) will be settled on the achievement of performance milestones relating to the commercialization of NanoGaN's technology platform.

NanoGaN has established a range of processes and intellectual property relating to gallium-nitride materials and devices. Its proprietary "nanocolumn technology", for example, is used to produce high-quality, free-standing GaN substrates - critical in the manufacture of blue and green semiconductor lasers and ultrahigh-brightness LEDs for solid-state lighting.

IQE will assist NanoGaN in completing the development of commercial products and will then transfer the latter's technology to its high-volume production facilities where it is expected to begin generating sales in 2010.

IQE claims the NanoGaN acquisition will accelerate the group's plans "to develop a leadership position in high-growth markets for advanced laser projection, high-definition optical storage, high-resolution laser printing and solid-state lighting for industrial, commercial and residential applications". NanoGaN's core technology will also be used to supply GaN products for high-power RF applications.

As part of the deal, Professor Wang Nang Wang, CEO of NanoGaN and inventor of its nanocolumn technology, will become chief scientific adviser to IQE.

"This acquisition provides a perfect complement to our existing wireless and opto, and emerging solar businesses," noted Drew Nelson, IQE's CEO.

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