HCT Shaping Systems Acquired by Applied Materials

Applied Materials, Inc. announced yesterday that it has completed the acquisition of HCT Shaping Systems SA (HCT), one of the world’s leading supplier of precision wafering systems for manufacturing crystalline silicon (c-Si) substrates for the solar industry.

Under the terms of the agreement, originally announced on June 26, 2007, Applied paid approximately US$ 483 million in cash for all of the outstanding shares of HCT, a privately held company based in Switzerland.

“This acquisition, combined with our strong production technology and global support infrastructure, will enable us to bring crystalline silicon solar manufacturing to a new level of efficiency and help drive down the cost-per-watt of solar power,” said Mike Splinter, president and CEO of Applied Materials.

“HCTs technology is critical to our roadmap since it complements our high-throughput deposition systems and will enable customers to scale up production and reduce costs.”

HCT is now part of Applied’s new Precision Wafering Systems division, operating under the Solar Business Group headed by Charles Gay.

Stefan Schneeberger, who has been appointed Vice President and General Manager of the Precision Wafering Systems division, commented, “We are excited to be part of Applied Materials. Our roadmaps are aligned with the goal of bringing new and advanced manufacturing technologies to reduce the cost of solar energy. Together, we will help customers to continuously reduce the grams of silicon needed per watt, while significantly improving their productivity.”

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