January 24, 2014 / 12:41 PM / in 4 years

Wacker Chemie takes control of wafer JV with Samsung Electronics

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German speciality chemicals maker Wacker Chemie (WCHG.DE) will take control of a wafer joint venture it holds with South Korea’s Samsung Electronics (005930.KS), it said on Friday.

Wacker Chemie’s Siltronic unit, which produces silicon wafers for the chip industry, will increase its stake in Siltronic Samsung Wafer Pte Ltd to 78 percent from 50 percent.

Partner Samsung Electronics will hold the remaining stake and remain a customer of Siltronic, Wacker Chemie said.

As part of the deal, Siltronic will invest a total of 150 million euros ($205 million) to participate in a capital increase and repay part of the joint venture’s outstanding project loans, which stand at about 210 million euros.

“The transaction gives us majority ownership of one of the most modern, efficient and profitable production sites for 300 mm wafers in Asia,” said Wacker Chemie Chief Financial Officer Joachim Rauhut.

The joint venture, formed in 2006, comprises production facilities for wafer and silicon ingots in Singapore, and will be renamed as Siltronic Silicon Wafer Pte Ltd.

    Siltronic accounted for about 17 percent of Wacker Chemie’s sales and 3 percent of its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation in the first nine months of 2013.

    Wacker Chemie is also the world’s second-largest maker of polysilicon, a key material needed to make solar cells.

    ($1 = 0.7310 euros)

    Reporting by Christoph Steitz; Editing by Mark Potter

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