Memory Chipmaker Micron To Acquire Inotera for $3.2 Billion

Leading memory chipmaker Micron Technology Inc. is going all in on Inotera Memories, snapping up the remaining shares of the company it doesn?EU?t already own. The sale price: about $3.2 billion.

Micron already owned 33 percent of Inotera, which it acquired from Qimonda in 2008. Inotera, which provides DRAM foundary services based on 30nm process technology, produces about 120,000 wafer starts every month for Micron.

"The acquisition is the culmination of a highly successful seven-year partnership with Inotera,?EU? said Micron CEO Mark Durcan, in a statement. ?EU?It enables Micron to realize the full financial and operational benefit of Inotera's operations.?EU?

DRAM Oversupply Woes

All told, Inotera produces about 35 percent of Micron?EU?s DRAM production. In July, Inotera said it is on track to convert about 80 percent of its total wafer-start capacity to 20nm process technology by the middle of 2016. That could help Micron compete in an already competitive market.

Micron may be moving to stop some bleeding in its stock. The company?EU?s value has been declining since the beginning of 2015, thanks to slowing PC sales before the July release of Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system, currency exchange rates that are impacting its non-U.S. business and overall slowing market DRAM growth.

Even with the acquisition, Micron may see conditions worsen before they improve. DRAM oversupply will stretch into 2016, resulting in a 13.6 percent decline in global memory spending in 2016, according to market research firm Gartner Inc. And with PC sales continuing to weaken, next year could be a stormy one for the company.

"Since the previous quarter's forecast, continued weakness in the euro and yen have created major weaknesses in the overall equipment market picture," said Bob Johnson, research vice president at Gartner, in a statement in July. "With over half of all equipment being produced by either Japanese or European...

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