Intel Corporation recently announced that it agreed to sell a 10% stake in the IMS Nanofabrication business (IMS) to TSMC. TSMC’s investment values IMS at approximately $4.3 billion, consistent with the valuation of the recent stake sale to Bain Capital Special Situations. Intel will retain majority ownership of IMS, which will continue to operate as a standalone subsidiary under the leadership of CEO Dr. Elmar Platzgummer. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2023.
IMS is an established industry leader in multi-beam mask writing tools required to develop advanced extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV), which is broadly adopted in leading-edge technology nodes that enable the most demanding computing applications like artificial intelligence (AI) and mobile. And together, Bain Capital and TSMC’s investments provide IMS with increased independence and reinforce confidence in the significant opportunity ahead of IMS. This added autonomy is going to help IMS accelerate its growth and drive the next phase of lithography technology innovation to enable the industry’s transition into new patterning systems, such as high-numerical-aperture (high-NA) EUV.
IMS plays an essential role in enabling the growth and advancement of the semiconductor industry in an era of ever more demanding applications. And global semiconductor demand continues to grow, fueled by five superpowers: AI, pervasive connectivity, ubiquitous computing, cloud-to-edge infrastructure and sensing. The market is expected to hit $1 trillion by 2030. A key enabler of this growth is advances in lithography technology like EUV, which is essential for the leading-edge nodes that enable these demanding applications. These lithographic advances rely on sophisticated mask-writing tools, which make IMS’ leadership technology central to innovation across the ecosystem.
Intel had initially invested in IMS in 2009 and acquired the remaining stakes in 2015. And since the acquisition, IMS has delivered a significant return on investment to Intel while growing IMS’ workforce and production capacity by four times and delivering three additional product generations. In June 2023, Intel announced an agreement to sell an approximately 20% stake in IMS to Bain Capital.
“This investment demonstrates the deep industry collaboration IMS is pioneering to advance critical lithography technology for leading-edge nodes, which will benefit the entire semiconductor manufacturing ecosystem. With enhanced independence, IMS will be well positioned to address the significant growth opportunity for multi-beam mask writing tools over the next decade and beyond.”
— Matt Poirier, senior vice president of Corporate Development at Intel
“We are delighted to bring in new investors to help us build on IMS’ leadership in multi-beam mask writing, which is the backbone of innovation in leading-edge semiconductor technologies. This is a testament to IMS’ expertise and leadership position in this integral technology. Together with our partners, we look forward to continuing to support innovation of next-generation technologies and deliver value across the semiconductor ecosystem.”
— CEO Dr. Elmar Platzgummer
“TSMC has been working with IMS since 2012 on the development of multi-beam mask writers for advanced technology nodes. This investment continues the long-term partnership between TSMC and IMS to accelerate innovation and enable deeper cross-industry collaboration.”
— Dr. Kevin Zhang, senior vice president of Business Development at TSMC
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