Zhejiang Jingsheng (also known as JSG), a Chinese provider of silicon materials and related processing equipment, announced on July 30 that it will establish a joint venture with Applied Materials, a US-based provider of semiconductor manufacturing equipment. This joint venture will then be used to acquire several business units from Applied Materials. Specifically, JSG is targeting the screen printing business in Italy, the wafer inspection business in Singapore, and other related business units in China. JSG stated that the deal is to support its expansion into the market for solar PV.
According to a report about the deal from CMB International Securities, the registered capital of the joint venture will be around US$150 million. JSG will have a 65% stake, whereas Applied Materials will have the remainder 35%. The joint venture will acquire several business units of Applied Materials for US$120 million. These business units have been providing solutions for PV generation, healthcare technologies, consumer electronics, etc. JSG believes that the deal will complement its development strategy and contribute to its long-term growth. The screen printing and wafer inspection businesses, in particular, will significantly strengthen its competitiveness in the PV industry.
JSG has steadily expand its presence across the PV supply chain. It first began as a provider of equipment for growing crystals and since then has added processing equipment for PV cells and modules into its portfolio. Its offerings now include smart processing equipment that fabricates modules with shingled cells. The breadth of its offerings is very wide, and the company is capable for creating a total manufacturing solution that encompasses everything from polysilicon to module. By obtaining the assets of Applied Materials, JSG will enhance its capability to sell integrated solutions and services, thereby turning the company into a technology platform provider for the industry.
Analysts have noted that the screen printing and wafer inspection businesses of Applied Materials can provide specific solutions for the production of PV cells. By acquiring them, JSG will be able to continue innovating so as to meet the changing needs of its clients and raise its competitiveness. Analysts are also optimistic that the joint venture will be able to combine and leverage the advantages of the two partnering companies.