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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
SIPLACE team becomes ASM Assembly Systems
Article Type: Industry news From: Soldering & Surface Mount Technology, Volume 23, Issue 2
Following approvals received from antitrust authorities and shareholders, ASM Pacific Technology Ltd (ASMPT), a Hong Kong-listed company, officially concluded its acquisition of Siemens AG’s SMT placement machine activities on January 7, 2011. The SIPLACE team with its approximately 1,200 members worldwide will be integrated into the ASMPT group as a business unit under the name “ASM Assembly Systems.” The Munich location with its almost 700 employees will remain SIPLACE’s headquarters, as well as its main development and manufacturing site; the SIPLACE organisation, which has sales and service locations all over the world, will remain largely unchanged. ASMPT, which is a leading supplier of assembly and packaging equipment and systems in the semiconductor and LED fields, is taking this step to expand its solution portfolio for electronics manufacturers and significantly improve its market position in Europe.
As ASM Assembly Systems, the SIPLACE team will be able to benefit from the ASMPT group’s strong market position in Asia, as well as from synergies in the areas of sourcing and parts and subassembly manufacturing.
The closing on January 7, 2011 concludes the sale of the SIPLACE placement equipment business to Hong Kong-based ASMPT. In future, the global SIPLACE team will operate as a business unit under the name “ASM Assembly Systems” when the almost 1,200 employees worldwide are integrated into the ASMPT group. Only the transfer of legal ownership of the SIPLACE entity in China will have to be deferred due to pending official approval of the transfer of ownership by the Chinese authorities. Meanwhile, economic interest in SIPLACE China has been transferred to ASMPT as of January 1, 2011.
Integration as a business unit
The SIPLACE team prepared for this sale in recent years by restructuring its operations – an effort that is now paying off as its worldwide production, development, sales and service locations within the SIPLACE organisation are being integrated into the ASMPT group. The global management team under CEO Günter Lauber and COO Günter Schindler will remain in place, as will the heads of the regional clusters. The division’s management, development and manufacturing headquarters will continue to be Munich, Germany.
“With ASMPT we have found an industrial investor that is intimately familiar with the cyclical nature of the electronics industry. Even before the sale, the SIPLACE team received lots of accolades for its lean cluster organisation and the fast and effective completion of the restructuring – the last fiscal year could have been completed with a positive operational result if not for the costs incurred in relation to the restructuring. Our Siemens colleagues provided exemplary support during the acquisition process. The integration of the SIPLACE team as a business unit allows us to continue to focus all of our energy on current and future customer projects, on the development of innovative placement solutions and on expanding our position in the market, especially in Asia,” explains Günter Lauber, the incumbent CEO of the global SIPLACE team. “Our new colleagues at ASMPT share our view that high product and service quality is the key to having satisfied customers and being successful in the market.”
COO Günter Schindler also welcomes the new constellation: “The teams fit well together, as is becoming apparent in our first joint projects in research and development (R&D) and on improving our sourcing. The skills and knowledge of both teams are coming together in a very harmonious and successful manner.”
Focus on growth
“In recent years, our customers made ASMPT the leading supplier of equipment and systems in the semiconductor and LED field. The acquisition which has just been completed provides us with an entry into the SMT placement segment. Working together with the SIPLACE team will open up new growth markets as our respective processes and technologies continue to converge. I am pleased that the teams from ASMPT and SIPLACE work so well together in their first joint projects and have already begun to put the resulting synergies in the areas of development, production and procurement to good use for the benefit of our customers,” says W.K. Lee, CEO of ASMPT, about the strategic motives behind the deal.