Micron said the acquisition would allow the company to research and develop manufacturing of 3D XPoint and emerging memory technologies independently.
The joint venture was founded in 2006 and was based on an original Micron shell at Lehi. IM Flash built a second 300mm wafer fab in Singapore that opened in April 2011. IM Flash Technologies pioneered NAND flash miniaturization before moving on to the production of phase-change memory production – so called 3D XPoint technology – for both parent companies. In July 2018, Micron and Intel announced they would cease joint development of 3D XPoint after the second generation was finalized in 1H19 (see Intel, Micron end collaboration on 3D XPoint NVM ).
Under an agreement with Intel, Micron can initiate the purchase on or after January 1, 2019 with a view to closing the deal within twelve months of the initiation.
Micron said it is working with other companies to introduce 3D XPoint products in 2019 with revenue ramping up in 2020. Joint manufacture of 3D XPoint memory will continue at the IM Flash facility in Lehi, Utah until the transaction is closed and it is expected that Micron will sell 3D XPoint memory wafers to Intel for up to a year after close.
"Micron's acquisition of IM Flash demonstrates our strong belief that 3D XPoint technology and other emerging memories will provide a unique differentiator for the company and be an essential solution for new data-hungry applications," said Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra.
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