STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, today announced it has signed an agreement to acquire a majority stake in French Gallium Nitride (GaN) innovator Exagan. Exagan’s expertise in epitaxy, product development and application know-how will broaden and accelerate ST’s power GaN roadmap and business for automotive, industrial and consumer applications. Exagan will continue to execute its product roadmap and will be supported by ST in the deployment of its products.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed and closing of the acquisition remains subject to customary regulatory approvals from French authorities. The signed agreement also provides for the acquisition by ST of the remaining minority stake in Exagan 24 months after the closing of the acquisition of the majority stake. The transaction is funded with available cash.
“ST has built strong momentum in silicon carbide and is now expanding in another very promising compound material, gallium nitride, to drive adoption of the power products based on GaN by customers across the automotive, industrial and consumer markets” said Jean-Marc Chery, President and CEO of STMicroelectronics. “The acquisition of a majority stake in Exagan is another step forward in strengthening our global technology leadership in power semiconductors and our long-term GaN roadmap, ecosystem and business. It comes in addition to ongoing developments with CEA-Leti in Tours, France, and the recently-announced collaboration with TSMC.”
Gallium Nitride (GaN) belongs to the family of wide bandgap (WBG) materials which include Silicon Carbide. GaN-based devices represent a major step forward in power electronics providing high-frequency operation, with increased efficiency and higher power density compared to silicon-based transistors, leading to power savings and total system downsizing. GaN products will address a wide variety of applications such as power factor correction and DC/DC converters in servers, telecom and industrial applications, on-board chargers for EV and DC-DC converters for automotive applications, as well personal electronics applications like power adaptors.
Founded in 2014 and headquartered in Grenoble (France), Exagan is dedicated to accelerating the power-electronics industry’s transition from silicon-based technology to GaN-on-silicon technology, enabling smaller and more efficient electrical converters. Its GaN power switches are designed for manufacturing in standard 200-mm wafer fabs.