Rudolph purchases assets from Tamar Technology

Rudolph Technologies, Inc., a provider of process characterization, photolithography equipment and software for the semiconductor, FPD, LED and solar industries, announced today that it has purchased selected assets, including a strong patent portfolio, relating to metrology capability from Tamar Technology, Newbury Park, Calif. The addition of Tamar’s advanced metrology technologies to Rudolph’s existing inspection and metrology systems will allow the company to address the emerging need for fast, precise three-dimensional (3D) measurement capabilities in the rapidly-growing advanced packaging market sector.

“The purchase of these assets adds new capabilities to our technology portfolio, which addresses an emerging need for 3D measurements to control copper pillar bumping in advanced packaging processes,” said Michael Jost, vice president and general manager of Rudolph’s Inspection Business Unit. “Tamar’s technology is already well-known and widely used. Integrating it into our NSX and F30 inspection and metrology platforms adds critical capability and value to an established and reliable tool set. Several customers brought this exclusive technology to our attention; and it was readily apparent that the acquisition of these assets would significantly enhance the breadth of our advanced packaging solutions. In addition, this purchase gives Rudolph a significant patent portfolio that we plan to fully leverage. The integration work is essentially complete and we expect to receive initial system orders in the coming months.”

Copper pillar bumping for flip-chips has been forecast to grow at a 35 percent CAGR from 2010 to 2018. While copper pillar bumping processes are the most significant immediate application, Tamar’s products are capable of critical measurements required in several packaging applications. For example, one application uses infrared light to measure TSV depth from the backside of the wafer, thus avoiding the limitations on via aspect ratio encountered by most frontside measurement approaches.

“We expect the addition of these unique and proprietary capabilities to positively influence both unit volume and margins while helping Rudolph to maintain our #1 market share position in this rapidly growing sector,” said Jost.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. However, the company noted that the asset purchase agreement includes an earn-out contingency that, if met, would bring the total transaction value to approximately $10 million. The company also noted that it expects the transaction to be accretive to earnings within the first 12 months.

Tamar Technology, based in Newbury Park, California, is a precision metrology company specializing in systems for the semiconductor, hard disk drive and medical device industries.  Rudolph provides a full-fab solution through its families of proprietary products that provide critical yield-enhancing information, enabling microelectronic device manufacturers to drive down the costs and time to market of their products.

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