Transphorm Closes JV Transaction for Acquisition of AFSW Wafer Fab

Article By : Transphorm Inc.

New JV partner JCP Capital adds financial strength for continued operation of Transphorm's premier GaN manufacturing fab.

Transphorm Inc. has finalized the transaction for the acquisition of 100% interest in the company’s AFSW wafer-fab facility by GaNovation, its new joint venture with Palo Alto-based JCP Capital. This deal represents a strong step forward for Transphorm and its existing AFSW wafer fabrication facility, previously a JV with Fujitsu Semiconductor Ltd (FSL), located in Aizu Wakamatsu, Japan. The facility is considered to be the premier wafer manufacturing fab in the world for high quality, reliable high voltage gallium nitride (GaN) power semiconductors.

The transaction completes the planned and previously announced exit of Fujitsu Semiconductor from the AFSW fab. Transphorm’s effective stake in AFSW will be 25% (via its 25% ownership of GaNovation), down from its previous 49% stake. This will reduce Transphorm’s direct capital outlay for AFSW by approximately 50%, resulting in more efficient P&L, with investment in GaN technologies and applications. In addition, partnering with JCP Capital adds a significant strategic-financial partner for AFSW that has global strength in the GaN ecosystem, and the shared goal of expanding Transphorm’s GaN power business. Importantly, this transition will be seamless for both Transphorm’s customers as well as the existing team and operations at the AFSW fab. With the close of this transaction, FSL’s previously announced exercise of the put option has also been satisfied.

“We are delighted to partner with Transphorm in AFSW, and its new parent entity GaNovation, a joint venture with Transphorm,” said David Cong, Founder and Managing Partner, JCP Capital. “GaNovation will not only bring significant capital to AFSW, the world’s premier GaN power wafer fab, over the next several years to expand GaN wafer manufacturing, but also contribute to growing the GaN product business together with our portfolio ecosystem at a faster vector, especially in the area of GaN-based fast chargers and adapters.”

Primit Parikh, co-founder and President of Transphorm, stated, “The partnership with GaNovation and JCP Capital is the ideal next step in Transphorm’s rapid growth and manufacturing of its highest quality-highest reliability GaN wafers and products, continuing our asset-light vertically integrated model with strong IP dominance and protection. We also thank Fujitsu Semiconductor for its long-standing partnership as well as its commitment to assist in the successful transition of AFSW going forward.”

“FSL and AFSW have been working closely with the Transphorm and the JCP Capital team for this transaction that continues forward the strong legacy of semiconductor manufacturing at AFSW in the exciting area of GaN semiconductors. Transphorm’s excellence in GaN, with the financial strength brought by JCP Capital, will make AFSW an even stronger manufacturing source for continued success,” commented Kagemasa Magaribuchi, President and Representative Director, FSL. “FSL will also continue to work with AFSW through transition services during the mutually agreed period of time.”

AFSW is believed to be the only GaN-on-silicon foundry that has reported defect densities (marker for yields) for GaN-on-silicon high voltage devices that are similar to that of silicon CMOS/bipolar technologies running in the same wafer fab. This advantage has been a strong contributor to Transphorm’s superior GaN products, including the latest generations like SuperGaN, with demonstrated performance advantage when compared to other e-mode GaN products for chargers/adapters in lower power applications from 45W to several 100W and against other GaN and SiC products for higher power applications to 10kW. AFSW is expected to continue to scale as the foundry center of excellence for GaN wafer fabrication while maintaining its ability for existing Silicon wafer fabrication.


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