Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Infineon to Divest Wireline Business to Private Equity for EUR 250 Million

Infineon Technologies will sell its Wireline Communications (WLC) business to Golden Gate Capital for EUR250 million. Golden Gate Capital is a San Francisco-based private equity investment firm with approximately $9 billion of capital under management.

Infineon's Wireline division supplies semiconductor solutions for ADSL/VDSL, access network processors, broadband CPE, TE carrier solutions, VoIP and digital cordless phones. Employment contracts for approximately 600 WLC employees will be transferred to the new company. Furthermore, an estimated 300 employees from Infineon central functions who already work on behalf of the WLC segment today are also designated to join the new company.

All products, locations and development projects will be continued by the new company. Around 800 patent families will be transferred.

Christian Wolff, who has led the division for many years, has been designated CEO of the new company. A name for the new company has not yet been announced.

Infineon said the divestiture enables it to focus on four segments: Automotive (ATV), Industrial & Multimarket (IMM), Chipcard & Security (CCS) and Wireless Solutions (WLS). The transaction will significantly improve Infineon's financial situation. Closing is expected in autumn 2009.

"The divestiture of the WLC segment is an important step in our overall refinancing process. Furthermore, our stronger focus enables us to expand our leading technological position in the three key sectors energy efficiency, communications and security", says Peter Bauer, CEO of Infineon Technologies AG. As the Wireline Communications segment is relatively independent from the working and production processes of the company as a whole, the carve-out will involve reasonable effort.

  • In 2007, Infineon Technologies acquired Texas Instruments' DSL Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) business. Financial terms were not disclosed.

  • Also in 2007, LSI sold its mobility products business to Infineon Technologies for $450 million in cash, plus incentives. The division, which originally belonged to Agere Systems, designs semiconductors and software for cellular telephone handsets and complete chip-level solutions for satellite digital audio radio applications.

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