SOURCE: International SEMATECH Manufacturing Initiative

March 31, 2005 10:00 ET

Samsung Electronics Joins International SEMATECH Manufacturing Initiative

AUSTIN, TX -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 31, 2005 -- Industry giant Samsung Electronics will join the International SEMATECH Manufacturing Initiative (ISMI) as the newest member of the manufacturing-oriented semiconductor consortium, effective April 1, ISMI officials announced today.

Samsung will arrive alongside other new ISMI members Panasonic and Spansion LLC, which joined ISMI in October 2004 and January 2005, respectively. ISMI, a subsidiary of SEMATECH, was formed last year as a new consortium dedicated to helping chip manufacturers improve factory productivity and reduce cost per wafer, and ultimately cost per die. ISMI's nine other members originated as SEMATECH member companies.

"Samsung Electronics is pleased to become part of a consortium as wide-ranging and robust as ISMI," said Byoung H. Park, Manager of the Technology Planning Group for Samsung Electronics. "We are especially impressed with ISMI's focus on equipment productivity, which provides significantly greater leverage for our capital investments. This fits well with our goal of making strong efforts to maintain our leading position in international markets."

"Samsung's arrival at ISMI will give us tremendous momentum in changing semiconductor manufacturing for the better," said John Schmitz, vice president and COO of Manufacturing Technology at SEMATECH. "ISMI's member companies now represent about 50 percent of world silicon capacity, which gives us considerable influence in helping guide the industry."

Scott Kramer, ISMI Director, said: "Samsung's membership will significantly increase our presence in Asia and give us an important window to Korean manufacturing. Plus, their assignees will bring appreciable depth to our overall project mix."

ISMI's core programs include fab productivity, equipment productivity, metrology, and environment/safety/health. The consortium conducts projects within those program areas, guided in the short term by installed base industry needs, and in the longer term by critical strategic manufacturing requirements defined by consortium members. Focused ISMI efforts in e-manufacturing, standards development, statistical methods and fab industry modeling have helped accelerate the realization of future factory needs of the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS).

ISMI membership is open to all semiconductor manufacturers with fabs. Participating companies continuously evaluate and refresh the consortium's program content, which includes cycle time reduction, equipment productivity improvement, and fab benchmarking.

About Samsung Electronics:

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2004 parent company sales of US$55.2 billion and net income of US$10.3 billion. Employing approximately 123,000 people in 93 offices in 48 countries, the company consists of five main business units: Digital Appliance Business, Digital Media Business, LCD Business, Semiconductor Business and Telecommunication Network Business. Recognized as one of the fastest growing brands, Samsung Electronics is the world's largest producer of memory chips, TFT-LCDs, color monitors, and color TVs. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.

About ISMI:

ISMI is a global alliance of the world's major semiconductor manufacturers, dedicated to reducing cost per wafer, and ultimately cost per die, through cooperative programs focused on manufacturing effectiveness. The consortium conducts programs in manufacturing infrastructure, methods, standards, and productivity, with the aim of reducing the costs of producing finished wafers and chips and driving solutions to major productivity challenges. ISMI is a wholly owned subsidiary of SEMATECH of Austin, TX.

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