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ARMONK, NY - 27 Jan 2006: IBM today announced that it has acquired INFICON's ARGUS® semiconductor software and related intellectual property, a leading system for lithography advanced process control for semiconductor manufacturing. Advanced process control capability is an area that is becoming increasingly important for clients, as they look for ways to implement real-time capabilities, collaborate using best of breed technologies, and lower manufacturing costs in the process of semiconductor manufacturing. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
INFICON's ARGUS software is an advanced process control system used to control the lithography process for semiconductor manufacturing. The software provides users with real-time run-to-run capability to control processes using measurement results from upstream and downstream processes, which can help to improve process yield, reduce lithography rework and improve the production ramp up.
"This acquisition further expands and strengthens our portfolio of factory process control solutions," said Joseph Nemeth, Vice President of Semiconductor Industry, IBM Engineering & Technology Services. "We see the ARGUS product as providing a critical solution to the semiconductor industry in both lithography development and early prototype manufacturing and it will be a true asset to our clients."
The combination of the ARGUS software, existing Engineering & Technology Services (E&TS) capabilities and IBM's deep technology expertise and intellectual property will enhance IBM's ability to provide semiconductor manufacturing customers with a comprehensive end to end solution.
IBM's E&TS and Microelectronics businesses will continue to provide global sales, support, and services coverage to the roster of ARGUS software clients. Critical development and support personnel from INFICON will join IBM.
Today's acquisition is part of a broader strategy to take advantage of a major shift occurring in the market where companies are reinventing their R&D process and collaborating in order to achieve the new level of innovation necessary for survival. As part of that strategy, IBM has integrated its E&TS, OEM Microelectronics, Technology Development & Manufacturing, Intellectual Property and OEM sales divisions into a new Technology Collaboration Solutions unit, working in partnership with clients to design, create and manufacture new products, dramatically reducing time to market from years to months, allowing clients to rapidly enter new markets and drive incremental growth for their businesses.
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