- Semiconductor maker Wolfspeed has agreed to sell its radio frequency business to Macom Technology Solutions for $125 million, the company announced last week.
- The radio frequency business includes a portfolio of semiconductor material products used in radio frequencies and microwave applications. The business segment also serves aerospace, defense, industrial and telecommunications customers.
- The sale also includes Wolfspeed’s 100mm gallium nitride wafer fabrication facility in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. Macom will take over the facility approximately two years after the transaction closes to allow Wolfspeed to relocate some of its production equipment.
Macom designs and manufactures semiconductor products for data center, telecommunication and industrial and defense applications, with a footprint across North America, Europe and Asia, according to the company website.
With the sale, approximately 280 radio frequency business employees will transfer to Macom, with more employees joining once the company completes transferring some of its production equipment, according to Macom’s press release.
Wolfspeed will also begin supplying Macom with epitaxial wafers and fabrication services for up to five years, according to an Aug. 22 SEC filing. During that time, Wolfspeed will also provide R&D and manufacturing support related to the radio frequency business.
“Given the significant growth we’ve seen in automotive, industrial and renewable energy markets, we believe this is the right time to further focus on scaling our Power device and materials businesses to meet this accelerated demand,” Wolfspeed President and CEO Gregg Lowe said in a statement. “This transaction also represents a tremendous opportunity for our RF team to grow and operate at scale, leveraging Macom’s diverse customer base, RF engineering leadership and operational efficiencies,”
Wolfspeed’s sale of its radio frequency business comes as it invests heavily in expanding its manufacturing footprint globally as part of a multi-year, $6.5 billion capacity expansion effort the company announced last October. The expansion will enable the company to support automotive, industrial and energy applications worldwide as demand for these industries increases.
“The adoption of silicon carbide is driving the need for more capacity, and we are seeing continuous upward pressure on the demand for both devices and materials,” CEO Gregg Lowe said in an earnings call earlier this month. “The EV revolution continues to be the driving force of adoption, with recent developments further bolstering the EV landscape.”
Last April, Wolfspeed opened its $1 billion Mohawk Valley silicon carbide fabrication facility in Marcy, New York. Wolfspeed is also building a $1.3 billion silicon carbide materials manufacturing facility in Siler City, North Carolina. The plant is expected to begin production in the second half of 2024 and supply the Mohawk Valley fabrication facility.
And in February, Wolfspeed announced it was building a 200mm wafer fabrication facility in Saarland, Germany, the company’s first fab in Europe.