Vertex in the News | 2001
Applied Materials buys Oramir Semiconductor for $27m
Author: Alon Tavor
The Marker.com, May 30, 2001
Applied Materials (Nasdaq:AMAT) yesterday announced the acquisition of Yokneam-based startup Oramir Semiconductor Equipment.
Oramir develops laser technology for the semiconductor industry. Its products serve in both production and post-production inspection processes.
Applied did not disclose the sum, but in practice it exercised an option it held to gain control of Oramir for $27 million in cash. It received the option when investing $1 million in Oramir in early 2000, according to a company value of $27 million.
The deal is still pending approval by the Israeli government and trustbuster. Oramir was established in 1992 by Rafael Development Corporation, the civilian applications arm of the government-controlled Rafael military industries group. Tel Aviv-traded Discount Investments and Elron Electronic Industries (Nasdaq:ELRNF) are partners in RDC.
Although the sum is no improvement on Oramir`s value in previous financing rounds, sources near the company say it needed the deal in order to continue to develop and realize its potential.
In 1997, Oramir received $7.5 million financing at a company value of $15 million. Its backers included the Teuza Fairchild Technology Venture fund. Oramir`s main shareholders are a wide range of Israeli venture capital funds.
Oramir maintains a staff of 25 at its Yokneam facility, which Applied says will apparently be integrated into its Applied`s Process Diagnotics and Control business group, located in Rehovot.
"This agreement represents a strategic opportunity for the synergy between Applied Materials` systems and extensive support team that can allow us to bring Oramir`s technology to customers in time for the emergence of high volume 300mm production fabs," stated Oramir CEO Yoram Uziel.