BOISE - Just days after Boise-based Micron Technology announced it would lay off 1500 local employees, the company is making another announcement – one that will grow the company, albeit half a world away.
Micron will expand its current joint venture with Nanya Technology Corporation by laying out $400 million cash to purchase a 35.6% stake in Inotera Memories, a Taiwanese DRAM maker.
Micron is buying the ownership position from Qimonda, a German company and will take over as co-owner of Inotera with Nanya.
Micron will get access to half of Inotera’s production output. The company makes 120,000 300-milimeter wafers each month. Micron will also contribute knowledge to the deal – by sharing its proprietary “Stack DRAM” technology so Inotera can make that product for both Micron and Nanya.
Micron says the deal is an opportunity to add capacity at an attractive price point, and a new fabrication plant for this type of memory would cost $3 billion to build from scratch.
Micron and Nanya already work together in a joint venture they announced earlier this year. The memory giants created a joint venture known as MeiYa in a deal valued at more than $1 billion. The new agreement extends the joint venture.
"This new relationship with Inotera will increase Micron’s competitiveness by further leveraging our current MeiYa joint venture with Nanya," Micron CEO Steve Appleton said in a prepared statement. "Micron will gain greater scale in DRAM, reduce our operating expenses per wafer and have access to a very cost competitive operation."
The news comes less than a week after Micron said it would layoff 15% of its global workforce, with 1500 of those job cuts coming in Boise over the next two years. Those job cuts are related to a different memory product known as NAND flash.