LONDON Troubled wireless components and GaAs foundry group Filtronic plc (Shipley, England) is in negotiations to sell its compound semiconductors division to an un-named company for no immediate money.
The company said late Friday (Nov.30) the operation which includes Europe's major 6 inch GaAs foundry and is based in Newton Aycliffe, England could receive some cash at a later date, but only if the unit hit certain performance targets.
Filtronic CEO Charles Hindson told EE Times Europe in June 2007 the company was looking at all options for the operation following the loss of its biggest customer for switches from the plant. He said the review could lead to closure of the business or a sale .
There have already been major cutbacks at the plant with over 100 of the 300 jobs there being eliminated. "We expanded our pHEMT manufacturing threefold in the past two years on the back of this order, so we have little choice but to scale back," Hindson said.
At its height the Newton Aycliffe, County Durham GaAs foundry — formerly a memory manufacturing plant owned by Fujitsu Microelectronics — employed about 450 people. In June, the compound semiconductor division has 320 employees.
Last year, Filtronic sold its wireless infrastructure division to Powerwave Technologies Inc for about £58 million. It still retains a group supplying parts for military operations, and a growing operation, dubbed the Point to Point group, focusing on transceiver modules and filters for backhaul microwave radios linking mobile basestations.