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AMD Announces Private Offering of $300 Million of Senior Notes

Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NYSE: AMD) today announced that it intends to commence a private offering, subject to market and other conditions, of $300 million aggregate principal amount of senior notes due 2022. AMD intends to use the net proceeds for general corporate purposes and working capital, which may include the following: (i) the repayment or repurchase of some or all of its outstanding 5.75% Convertible Senior Notes due August 2012, (ii) repayment or repurchase of some or all of its outstanding 6.00% Convertible Senior Notes due 2015, (iii) cash payments to GLOBALFOUNDRIES related to the 28nm product limited waiver of exclusivity, or (iv) potential strategic transactions.

The new senior notes have not been registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or applicable state securities laws, and will be offered only to qualified institutional buyers in reliance on Rule 144A and in offshore transactions pursuant to Regulation S under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. Unless so registered, the new senior notes may not be offered or sold in the United States except pursuant to an exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act and applicable state securities laws.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Extending Fab 8 to Meet Strong Customer Demand

GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced it is moving forward with the final construction for the extension of Module 1 at the Fab 8 campus in New York. The project will add 90,000 square feet of manufacturing capacity, bringing the total capacity for Fab 8 Module 1 to 300,000 square feet. Construction activities are scheduled to begin in August and work is expected to be completed in December 2013.

“During the construction of Fab 8, we extended the shell of the Module 1 building with the expectation that our business would continue to grow. Today we see increasingly strong demand from our customers, especially at the 28nm node, and we are excited to be moving forward with this next phase in the development of the Fab 8 campus,” said Eric Choh, vice president and general manager, Fab 8, GLOBALFOUNDRIES. “By continuing to expand our investment in the project, GLOBALFOUNDRIES is delivering more options to our global customers, while helping to redefine upstate New York as a premier hub of the global semiconductor industry, creating thousands of new advanced manufacturing jobs, and contributing billions of dollars to the regional economy.”

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Silicon Validates 28nm AMS Production Design

At next week’s Design Automation Conference (DAC) in San Francisco, Calif., GLOBALFOUNDRIES plans to demonstrate an enhanced silicon-validated design flow for its 28nm Super Low Power (SLP) technology with Gate First High-k Metal Gate (HKMG). The flow provides proven and complete front-to-back support for advanced analog/mixed-signal (AMS) design using the industry’s latest design automation technology. In addition, the company will reveal jointly developed design flows with its EDA partners in certifying both analog and digital “double patterning aware” flows for its 20nm process, with silicon validation expected in early 2013 at that technology node.

As a result of GLOBALFOUNDRIES’ commitment to silicon validation of flows before releasing them, customers have the confidence to produce signoff-ready 28nm digital and analog designs using the industry's most advanced set of design tools, tool scripts, and methodologies from the leading EDA suppliers. The company’s tight collaboration with the design tool and IP ecosystem also accelerates its ability to develop working flows for advanced nodes such as 20nm, providing their advantages in gate density, performance, and lower power to customers ahead of other foundries.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Improves IC Reliability with Customized Circuit Checks

Mentor Graphics Corp. today announced that GLOBALFOUNDRIES is helping its customers improve reliability checking by adding Calibre PERC to select 28nm bulk CMOS design enablement flows. Calibre PERC will give designers access to the new reliability verification rules developed by the IBM Semiconductor Development Alliance (ISDA), augmented with GLOBALFOUNDRIES specific checks to help prevent external latch-up. Using Calibre PERC’s unique architecture, complex reliability rules that require the integration of logical (net list) and layout (GDS) information can be fully automated, eliminating manual spreadsheet-based efforts and reducing the chances of design errors.

“In the past, verification of latch-up immunity depended on manual layout checks and rough approximations of device and interconnect resistance using traditional mechanisms,” said Bill Liu, vice president of design enablement at GLOBALFOUNDRIES. “Now our customers can perform accurate measurements and analysis automatically using Calibre PERC’s data integration capability. For example, some of our customers are currently using PERC to accurately determine the resistance of the paths in complex output driver arrays as a function of device spacing. This allows them to easily and accurately detect points in the circuit where latch-up could be an issue and to make appropriate improvements.”

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Fab 8 Adds Tools to Enable 3D Chip Stacking at 20nm and Beyond

GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced a significant milestone on the road to enabling 3D stacking of chips for next-generation mobile and consumer applications. At its Fab 8 campus in Saratoga County, NY, the company has begun installation of a special set of production tools to create Through-Silicon Vias (TSVs) in semiconductor wafers processed on the company’s leading-edge 20nm technology platform. The TSV capabilities will allow customers to stack multiple chips on top of each other, providing another avenue for delivering the demanding requirements of tomorrow’s electronic devices.

Essentially vertical holes etched in silicon and filled with copper, TSVs enable communication between vertically stacked integrated circuits. For example, the technology could allow circuit designers to place stacks of memory chips on top of an application processor, which can dramatically increase memory bandwidth and reduce power consumption—a key challenge for designers of the next generation of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.

Abu Dhabi and Saxony to Host Twin Semiconductor Research Labs

The Advanced Technology Investment Company and the state of Saxony, Germany, today announced the establishment of two research labs working in tandem on areas of interest to the semiconductor industry. The 'Twin Labs' project will be backed by the Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC) and Saxony, which have each pledged US$2.4 million towards the plan over two years. Masdar Institute of Science and Technology will host the Abu Dhabi research center, while Technische Universität Dresden will oversee development of the Saxony lab.

Both sites will be of similar size, initially staffed with 10-12 graduate/Ph.D. students. Additional faculty members will be engaged at a later stage after the centers have established initial successes. Research will focus primarily on three-dimensional chip stacking, a potentially faster and more energy efficient semiconductor technology that follows ATIC's broader emphasis on minimum electronic energy systems, or MEES.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Dresden Fab Ships 250,000th 32 nm HKMG Wafer

GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced that its Fab 1 in Dresden, Germany has shipped a quarter of a million semiconductor wafers based on 32nm High-k Metal Gate (HKMG) technology. The milestone represents a significant lead over other foundries in HKMG manufacturing and carries on a long tradition of rapidly ramping leading-edge technologies to volume production.

On a unit basis, cumulative 32nm shipments for the first five quarters of wafer production are more than double that achieved during the same period of the 45nm technology ramp, demonstrating that the overall 32nm ramp has significantly outpaced the 45nm ramp, despite the integration of a number of new and complex elements in both design and process technologies.

AMD Amends Wafer Supply Agreement With GLOBALFOUNDRIES

AMD today announced that it entered into an amendment to its Wafer Supply Agreement (WSA) with GLOBALFOUNDRIES Inc. In this amendment, AMD and GLOBALFOUNDRIES agreed to a negotiated wafer price mechanism for 2012. AMD also agreed to transfer its remaining ownership interest in GLOBALFOUNDRIES to GLOBALFOUNDRIES and, as a result, AMD will no longer hold an equity stake in GLOBALFOUNDRIES.

"The amended wafer supply agreement demonstrates that AMD and GLOBALFOUNDRIES remain committed as long-term strategic business partners," said Rory Read, chief executive officer, AMD. "We made significant progress last year to strengthen our relationship, and we're pleased with GLOBALFOUNDRIES' recent performance in meeting our delivery requirements across our product line."

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Marks Third Anniversary by Achieving Full Independence

GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced it has agreed to terms with AMD to acquire the remaining stake in GLOBALFOUNDRIES, fulfilling the company's long-term vision of becoming an independent foundry company.

The agreement, part of an amendment to the commercial Wafer Supply Agreement (WSA) with AMD, firmly positions GLOBALFOUNDRIES as a pure-play, leading semiconductor foundry company with AMD as one of its primary and strategic customers. GLOBALFOUNDRIES will now be wholly owned by the Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC).

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Adds New Chief Procurement Officer

GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced the appointment of Magnus Matthiasson as Chief Procurement Officer (CPO). Based at the company's corporate offices in Silicon Valley, Matthiasson will lead the GLOBALFOUNDRIES global purchasing activities, including managing all aspects of the company's supply base relationships worldwide. Matthiasson will report to GLOBALFOUNDRIES Chief Financial Officer, Dan Durn.

"Given the magnitude of our annual capital-equipment and purchasing investments, the right leadership to drive our strategic supply chain relationships and procurement operations is critical to our ability to provide value to our customers and grow our business profitably," said Durn. "With Magnus in place, our aim is to bolster a world-class procurement organization with programs that continuously optimize our purchasing and materials spend and management capabilities."

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Reportedly Acquiring DRAM Maker ProMOS Technologies

US-based chip manufacturer GLOBALFOUNDRIES is said to be planning on getting itself a fab in the home country of arch-rival TSMC (Taiwan). This would be done through the acquisition, for NT$20 - 30 billion (US$ 506 - 760 million), of (troubled and soon to be delisted) DRAM company ProMOS Technologies who owns a 300 mm plant at Taichung.

By snatching up ProMOS, GLOBALFOUNDRIES is expected to have a better chance of getting contracted by companies (in Taiwan and China) currently working with TSMC or UMC.

ProMOS' Taichung fab has a production capacity of 60,000 wafers per month and that would add to the 130,000 wafers/month from GLOBALFOUNDRIES' facilities in Germany and Singapore.Source: Digitimes

First 28 nm Cortex-A9 POP Available for GLOBALFOUNDRIES 28nm-SLP HKMG Process

ARM today announced the availability of the ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore Processor Optimization Pack (POP) for GLOBALFOUNDRIES' 28 nm-SLP High-K Metal Gate process technology. Optimized for mobile, networking and enterprise applications, the energy-efficient ARM POP 28 nm-SLP for Cortex-A9 processors delivers a performance range from 1 GHz to 1.6 GHz for worst case conditions, with up to 2 GHz in typical conditions. This provides a wide range of flexibility for System-on-Chip (SoC) designers to optimize performance and energy-efficiency using the ARM Artisan Physical IP Platform and Cortex-A9 POP.

AMD Reports Fourth Quarter and Annual Results

AMD (NYSE:AMD) today announced revenue for the fourth quarter of 2011 of $1.69 billion, net loss of $177 million, or $0.24 per share, and operating income of $71 million. The company reported non-GAAP net income of $138 million, or $0.19 per share, and non-GAAP operating income of $172 million. Fourth quarter non-GAAP net income excludes an impairment of AMD's investment in GLOBALFOUNDRIES of $209 million, restructuring charges of $98 million, the loss from discontinued operations of $4 million, the amortization of acquired intangible assets of $3 million and a loss on debt repurchase of $1 million.

For the year ended December 31, 2011, AMD reported revenue of $6.57 billion, net income of $491 million, or $0.66 per share, and operating income of $368 million. Full year non-GAAP net income was $374 million, or $0.50 per share, and non-GAAP operating income was $524 million.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES and ARM Deliver Optimized SoC Solution based on ARM Cortex-A Series

GLOBALFOUNDRIES and ARM today revealed the latest advances in their longstanding collaboration to deliver optimized system-on-chip (SoC) solutions for ARM Cortex-A series processor designs using ARM Artisan advanced physical IP and GLOBALFOUNDRIES’ leading-edge process technologies. The companies announced the industry’s first test chip based on a dual-core Cortex-A9 processor operating at frequencies of more than 2.5GHz. In addition, a 20nm tape out using GLOBALFOUNDRIES’ Technology Qualification Vehicle (TQV) was also announced for SoCs based on Cortex-A9 processors.

The two companies worked closely together to develop a TQV strategy that allows GLOBALFOUNDRIES to optimize its advanced process technology for customer designs based on Cortex-A series processors. The solution is more than a standard test chip. Each TQV is designed to emulate a full specification SoC and aims to improve performance, lower power consumption and facilitate a faster path to market for foundry customers.

AMD Announces Preliminary Third Quarter Results

AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced that revenue for the third quarter ending Oct. 1, 2011 is expected to increase four to six percent as compared to the second quarter of 2011. The company previously forecasted third quarter 2011 revenue to increase 10 percent, plus or minus two percent, from the second quarter of 2011.

In addition, AMD expects third quarter gross margin to be approximately 44 to 45 percent. The company previously forecasted third quarter 2011 gross margin to be approximately 47 percent.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Fabs in New York and Dresden Achieve Ready for Equipment Milestone

Just over one year after revealing plans for a major global capacity expansion, GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced its newly constructed cleanrooms in New York and Dresden are ready for the installation of 300mm semiconductor wafer fabrication equipment. Achieving “Ready for Equipment” (RFE) status marks the transition from the construction phase to the operations phase—a significant milestone on the path to volume manufacturing in these new facilities.

“At GLOBALFOUNDRIES, we continue to invest aggressively in driving sustained growth on advanced technologies,” said GLOBALFOUNDRIES CEO Ajit Manocha. “The build-out of our 300mm manufacturing campuses in New York and Dresden is supporting growing customer demand for advanced technologies, while creating hundreds of jobs and providing a significant boost to the economies in the surrounding regions. By completing these massive construction projects on schedule and on budget, we are continuing to deliver on our commitment to being the only truly global foundry.”

AMD Amends Wafer Supply Agreement with GLOBALFOUNDRIES

AMD (NYSE: AMD) announced that it amended its Wafer Supply Agreement (WSA) with GLOBALFOUNDRIES Inc. The primary purpose of the amendment was to revise the pricing methodology applicable to wafers delivered in 2011 for AMD’s microprocessor and accelerated processing unit (APU) products. The amendment also modified AMD’s existing commitments regarding future increases in production of certain graphics processing unit (GPU) and chipset products at GLOBALFOUNDRIES.

Under the amended agreement, GLOBALFOUNDRIES has committed to provide AMD with, and AMD has committed to purchase, a fixed number of 45nm and 32nm wafers per quarter in 2011. AMD will pay GLOBALFOUNDRIES fixed prices for 45nm wafers delivered in 2011. AMD’s price for 32nm products will be based on good die.

AMD Appoints New CEO, Dirk Meyer Resigns

AMD today announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Senior Vice President and CFO Thomas Seifert, 47, as interim CEO following the resignation of Dirk Meyer, 49, as president, CEO and a director of the company effective immediately.

A CEO Search Committee has been formed to begin the search for a new CEO. The Committee is led by Bruce Claflin, Chairman of AMD’s Board of Directors, who has been named Executive Chairman of the Board as he assumes additional oversight responsibilities during the transition period. Seifert will maintain his current responsibilities as CFO and has asked not to be considered for the permanent CEO position.

GlobalFoundries Outlines Plans for EUV Lithography Leadership

In a keynote address today at SEMICON West, Gregg Bartlett, senior vice president of technology and R&D at GLOBALFOUNDRIES, revealed details of the company’s plans to drive Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) lithography to high-volume production. “Our strategy is to move past the pre-production tool step and straight to purchasing a production-level tool for installation in Fab 8—our new leading-edge fab currently under construction in upstate New York,” Bartlett said. “We are planning to install this tool in the second half of 2012 so we can immediately begin the development work to enable volume production by the 2014/2015 timeframe. It is our collaborative approach to R&D that has put us in a position to make such a move—a move that will accelerate the charge to volume production for the entire industry.”

As an industry leader in bringing immersion lithography to high-volume production, GLOBALFOUNDRIES is well positioned to lead this effort. “We can take what we learned with immersion and apply it to ramping EUV to high volume,” Bartlett said. “From our perspective, we see immersion lithography getting us through the 22/20nm node, but not without some serious cost challenges and added complexity. We need another solution, and in our view EUV is the most promising candidate.”

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Launches Global Partner Ecosystem to Drive Industry Collaboration

At next week's Design Automation Conference (DAC), GLOBALFOUNDRIES will unveil a new platform to spur innovation in semiconductor manufacturing and help deliver unparalleled service to chip designers. Called GLOBALSOLUTIONS, the new ecosystem combines the company's internal resources with a broad spectrum of partners to efficiently enable the fastest time-to-volume for foundry customers.

“As chip design grows in complexity and manufacturing partnerships become increasingly critical, foundry customer enablement needs to extend beyond process design kits and reference flows to include the full spectrum of the semiconductor value chain,” said Jim Kupec, senior vice president of worldwide sales and marketing at GLOBALFOUNDRIES. “To this end, GLOBALSOLUTIONS includes ecosystem partners in all aspects of design enablement, turnkey services, design for manufacturability, optical proximity correction and mask operations, and will further expand our capabilities in advanced assembly solutions. This will allow our customers to unlock their innovation potential and differentiate at all levels of the design process, from the silicon and SoC level all the way up to the full system.”

AMD to Switch to GlobalFoundries with 28 nm GPUs

With AMD's next generation of graphics processors, the company plans to, at one point, switch its GPU manufacturing from its present Taiwan-based foundry partners such as TSMC and UMC, to GlobalFoundaries, its erstwhile own manufacturing division. From 40 nm, graphics processors are expected to jump to 28 nm as the next manufacturing process standard. GlobalFoundries will be ready with a 28 nm High-K metal gate (HKMG) node for making AMD products which are now bulk-manufactured in Taiwan.

During a quarterly conference call with financial analysts, chief executive officer of AMD, Dirk Meyer said "The first intersection of our AMD GPUs and GlobalFoundries are on the 28nm. We haven’t been public with respect to any timing there." GlobalFoundries is said to have two principal kinds of 28 nm nodes, the 28nm-HP (High Performance) node makes complex chips such as GPUs, game console chips, storage controllers, networking and media encoding, while the 28nm-SLP (Super Low Power) is used for less complex devices, particularly intended to be low-power, for portable devices, such as baseband, application processors, and other handheld functions. In 2011, AMD is expected to release its next-generation of GPUs in a series codenamed "Northern Islands".Source: X-bit Labs

AMD Reports Record First Quarter Revenue

AMD (NYSE:AMD) announced revenue for the first quarter of 2010 of $1.57 billion, net income of $257 million, or $0.35 per share, and operating income of $182 million. The company reported non-GAAP net income of $63 million, or $0.09 per share, and non-GAAP operating income of $130 million.

“Strong product offerings and solid operating performance resulted in record first quarter revenue,” said Dirk Meyer, AMD President and CEO. “We continue to strengthen our product offerings. We launched our latest generation of server platforms, expanded our family of DirectX 11-compatible graphics offerings, and commenced shipments of our next-generation notebook platforms to customers.”

GLOBALFOUNDRIES and ARM Define the Standard for Mobile Technology Platform Innovation

At the 2010 Mobile World Congress, GLOBALFOUNDRIES and ARM today unveiled new details on their leading-edge System-on-Chip (SoC) platform technology for powering the next generation of wireless products and applications. The new chip manufacturing platform is projected to enable a 40 percent increase in computing performance, a 30 percent decrease in power consumption, and a 100 percent increase in standby battery life. The new platform includes collaboration on two GLOBALFOUNDRIES process variants: 28nm super low power (SLP) for mobile and consumer applications and 28nm high performance (HP) for applications requiring maximum performance.

“The success of the next generation of mobile products will be increasingly dependent on their ability to deliver PC-class performance, a highly integrated rich media experience and longer battery life,” said GLOBALFOUNDRIES chief operating officer Chia Song Hwee. “These demands are going to require a strong technology foundation and close collaboration between industry leaders to enable an increasing number of design companies to unlock this innovation. We are working closely with ARM to optimize the physical IP and implementation of the Cortex-A9 processor with our proven manufacturing experience in high-volume, advanced technology products, to deliver a fully integrated platform for leading-edge wireless products and applications.”

Toppan Photomasks and GLOBALFOUNDRIES Form JV at Dresden Advanced Mask Tech Center

Toppan Photomasks, Inc. (TPI) and GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced that they have formed a joint venture for operation of the Advanced Mask Technology Center (AMTC) in Dresden, Germany. The joint venture will provide leading-edge photomasks to GLOBALFOUNDRIES and to TPI’s European and global networks of customers.

Under terms of the venture, TPI’s Dresden manufacturing facility and the AMTC will be combined into a single manufacturing facility. TPI will retain its Dresden sales, customer service and mask front-end functions. The new integrated organization builds on the AMTC’s history of providing advanced masks, TPI’s and GLOBALFOUNDRIES’ manufacturing excellence in Dresden, Toppan’s world-class mask technology development, and the extensive collaborative relationships that GLOBALFOUNDRIES and Toppan have established in the industry.

ARM and GLOBALFOUNDRIES Partner to Build ARM SoC Products on 28 nm HKMG Process

ARM and GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announces a long-term strategic relationship to provide their mutual customers with an innovative SoC enablement program. To support the long-term relationship, GLOBALFOUNDRIES and ARM have signed a broad agreement on processor implementation and circuit optimization to provide mutual customers with a robust enablement program geared towards next-generation applications.

The SoC enablement program, built around a full suite of ARM Physical IP, Fabric IP and Processor IP, will deliver customers unparalleled design flexibility on GLOBALFOUNDRIES’ most advanced HKMG semiconductor manufacturing capabilities. The collaborative efforts of the partnership will initially focus on enabling SoC products which use the low power and high performance ARM Cortex -A9 processor on GLOBALFOUNDRIES 28nm HKMG process. The characteristics of GLOBALFOUNDRIES 28nm “Gate First” HKMG technology is optimized for high performance processing with minimal leakage making it an ideal choice for advanced mobile solutions.
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