LONDON – Memory chip maker Micron Technology Inc. (Boise, Idaho) is preparing to lay off about one third of its workforce at its wafer fab in Israel, according to local news reports.
The job cuts will be at Micron's flash memory manufacturing plant at Kiryat Gat, Israel, and are set to include about 500 out of the 1,300 people employed there, according to the Calcalist newspaper. They will take place during 2013, the newspaper said.
Micron job cuts would be the latest in a wave of job cuts in hardware sector of the electronics industry that has hit Israel since October, according to reports in the Calcalist and Globes newspapers. Orbotek and Freescale Semiconductor have both made large job cuts recently the reports said.
Micron's Kiryat Gat fab was originally built by Intel as its Fab 18 before being transferred to Numonyx NV, a joint venture company formed in 2008 by Intel, STMicroelectronics and Francisco Partners to make flash memory ICs. Numonyx and the fab was acquired by Micron in 2010.
In September 2012, Micron announced it had made a net loss of $1.03 billion on net sales of $8.2 billion for the 2012 fiscal year. For the previous fiscal year Micron reported a net income of $167 million on net sales of $8.8 million.
Micron was contacted but did not comment on the reports by the time this story was posted.