SK Hynix To Acquire Intel Flash Memory Unit


SK Hynix agreed a deal to acquire Intel’s NAND memory business for US$9 billion, a move which will nearly double the South Korean chipmaker’s market share in the segment and put it in second place behind rival Samsung.

In a statement, SK Hynix said the deal covers Intel’s solid-state drive business, component and flash wafer units, and a factory in Dalian, China. Intel will retain its Optane advanced memory business.

SK Hynix expects to obtain government approvals by late 2021. It will then pay Intel US$7 billion to acquire the NAND business and the Dalian plant.

Final closing is expected in March 2025, when SK Hynix will pay US$2 billion for the remaining assets, including IP related to the manufacture and design of NAND flash wafers, R&D staff and the Dalian workforce.

Until the deal is closed, Intel will continue to manufacture NAND wafers at Dalian and retain the IP.

Intel CEO Bob Swan said the transaction will allow it to further “prioritise our investments in differentiated technology where we can play a bigger role in the success of our customers and deliver attractive returns to our stockholders”.

SK Hynix CEO, Seok-Hee Lee said: “I am pleased to see SK Hynix and Intel’s NAND division, which have led the NAND flash technology innovation, work to build the new future together.”

TrendForce data showed SK Hynix had an 11.7 per cent share of the NAND flash market in Q2: Intel would take this to 23.2 per cent, behind Samsung (31.4 per cent) and ahead of Japan-based Kioxia (17.2 per cent).

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