Ex-CEO of Imagination in potential bid for Newport Wafer Fab

August 02, 2021 // By Peter Clarke
Ex-CEO of Imagination in potential bid for Newport Wafer Fab
Ron Black, a former CEO of Imagination Technologies who resigned over Chinese intervention in that company, is reportedly involved in a potential deal to take control of Newport Wafer Fab.

Newport Wafer Fab has been acquired by analog, power and discretes chipmaker Nexperia NV (Nijmegen, The Netherlands), owned by Wingtech of Shanghai, China ( China's Nexperia buys Newport Wafer Fab amid concerns ).

Concerns were raised when it was realised that the wafer fab as the UK's largest and most up to date and that shortages of semiconductors had hit numerous industries in the UK including automotive. Wingtech is reportedly building a 300mm wafer fab in China with state funds to install processes obtained from Newport.

Subsequently UK prime minister Boris Johnson has said the deal must be investigated by the National Security Advisor Sir Stephen Lovegrove. UK government will investigate takeover of Newport Wafer Fab ). Potentially the deal could be vetoed under the National Security and Investment Act.

If the UK government intervenes Black is part of a consortium of private equity firms and banks ready to take back ownership of the Newport Wafer Fab from Chinese-back ownership, according to a Daily Telegraph report.

Ron Black resigned from his position as CEO of Imagination Technologies in April 2020, when China Reform Holdings tried to nominate four directors to the company ( Imagination's senior executives quit over potential Chinese coup ).

Nexperia took control of Newport Wafer Fab after it exercised the right to appoint directors to its supplier when it failed to meet certain supply contract conditions.

Related links and articles:  

www.newportwaferfab.co.uk

www.nexperia.com

News articles:

China's Nexperia buys Newport Wafer Fab amid concerns

UK government will investigate takeover of Newport Wafer Fab

Silicon Catalyst startup incubator launches in UK

Imagination's senior executives quit over potential Chinese coup


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