Micron to scoop up Intel portion of IM Flash for $1.5 billion

Intel to exit joint venture with Micron at a time of its choosing in the next six to twelve months.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor on

Micron has announced it will be exercising its call option to scoop up Intel's holding of its IM Flash joint venture.

Intel will walk away with $1.5 billion in cash, and is able to set the transaction date in the next six to twelve months.

"The payment will end Intel's noncontrolling interest in IM Flash and eliminate IM Flash member debt on Micron's balance sheet, which was $1 billion as of Nov. 29, 2018," Micron said in a statement.

Micron said the transaction would have no meaningful impact on its non-GAAP results, and IM Flash was already consolidated. The company flagged its intention to takeover IM Flash in October.

"Micron's acquisition of IM Flash demonstrates our strong belief that 3D XPoint technology and other emerging memories will provide a unique differentiator for the company and be an essential solution for new data-hungry applications," Micron President and CEO Sanjay Mehrotra said at the time.

"This investment provides Micron with an established development and manufacturing facility and a highly skilled workforce with a strong track record of innovation and execution."

The two companies agreed in July to end joint development of 3D XPoint technology -- which is used in Intel's Optane memory -- after the completion of a second-generation node, Micron said.

Micron said it is working with others to create products based on 3D XPoint that will hit the market in late 2019.

Intel and Micron teamed up to create IM Flash in 2006.

In its third quarter results released in October, Intel reported net income of $6.4 billion on record quarterly revenue of $19.2 billion, up 19 percent from a year ago.

The chip giant said it saw record revenue of $1.1 billion in its non-volatile memory business which sells Optane and 3D NAND products such as SSDs, recording year-on-year growth of 21 percent and $160 million in operating income.

For its first quarter to November 29, Micron reported operating income of $3.76 billion on revenue of $7.9 billion. For the first quarter of 2018, Micron had operating income of $3.1 billion and revenue of $6.8 billion.

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(Image: Intel Corporation)
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