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Monday, 22 April, 2002, 06:43 GMT 07:43 UK
Hynix-Micron chip pact signed at last
A Micron chip factory
Much-needed consolidation has been a long time coming
One of the most tortuously-negotiated deals in recent business history appears close to completion, after US-based Micron Technology signed a tentative deal to buy the memory chip operations of South Korea's Hynix Semiconductor.

The deal, worth about $3.4bn (2.4bn) and paid in Micron shares, has been keenly awaited as a sign of long-needed consolidation in the battered chip sector.

If the deal goes through, Micron would become the world's largest memory chip maker.

The two sides, as well as Hynix's creditors, now have until the end of this month to finalise a pact.

Deal details

Aside from the Micron shares, the US firm has committed to invest some $200m in a 15% stake in the rest of Hynix.

At the same time, the Korean firms' creditors are believed likely to provide $1.5bn in long-term financing.

The deal has been the subject of intense discussion since last November, and came close to collapse on several occasions.

The price tag represents a defeat for Hynix, which had been holding out for a sum approaching $5bn.

For a while, it flirted with Germany's Infineon, but was unable to persuade it to raise its price above Micron's.

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Hank Morris, Industrial Research Consultants
"There is an awful lot of impetus behind the take-over."
See also:

04 Feb 02 | Business
Hynix 'shuns Infineon offer'
04 Jan 02 | Business
Micron-Hynix deal inches closer
02 Jan 02 | Business
Chip makers hike prices
19 Dec 01 | Business
Hynix merger hopes fade
18 Dec 01 | Business
Toshiba backs out of memory market
06 Dec 01 | Business
When the chips are down
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