12 November 2021
SAS makes $15m investment in Transphorm as part of strategic partnership
Transphorm Inc of Goleta, near Santa Barbara, CA, USA — which designs and manufactures JEDEC- and AEC-Q101-qualified gallium nitride (GaN) field-effect transistors (FETs) for high-voltage power conversion applications — and SAS (Sino-American Silicon Products Inc) of Hsinchu, Taiwan, the parent company to GlobalWafers Co Ltd (GWC, one of the world’s three largest silicon wafer manufacturers), has announced a strategic partnership to expand the companies’ supply chain in the fast-growing GaN market. SAS and GWC have a combined market capitalization of more than US$16bn (based on the stock price on 9 November).
In addition, SAS has made a $15m equity investment into Transphorm (including its initial $5m investment made in August). The latest investment was made through a private placement of Transphorm’s common stock at $5 per share. This joins separate equity financing of $23m made through a private placement of Transphorm shares to KKR Phorm Investors L.P. and several US institutional investors.
Through the new strategic partnership, Transphorm plans to significantly enhance the supply chain for GaN epiwafers. The deal includes GWC becoming Transphorm’s manufacturing partner and supplier, captive for Transphorm’s GaN epiwafers, a move that will augment Transphorm’s internal capacity. Additionally, SAS will become a distributor for select Transphorm epiwafer products as well as power products, boosting the growth of Transphorm’s GaN product sales.
“Transphorm is a proven GaN power and epi products leader with vertically integrated manufacturing and one of the strongest GaN power IP portfolios in the world,” comments SAS/GWC’s chairwoman & CEO Doris Hsu. “Our strategic partnership will enable Transphorm to scale at a faster pace,” she adds. “The GaN power and RF markets represent a multi-billion-dollar opportunity with fast-growing segments including fast chargers and adapters, server-storage-networking power, renewable energy and industrial power, electric vehicles as well as RF GaN electronic devices for 5G and a variety of communication/infrastructure applications,” Hsu continues.
“This partnership will allow for our rapid expansion in the GaN market, with a multi-year growth plan to scale GaN epiwafer manufacturing for Transphorm, while protecting our intellectual property,” says Transphorm’s co-founder & president Primit Parikh. “It will provide Transphorm’s customers – from compact high-speed fast charger to efficient higher-power electric vehicles – the security of supply, multiple locations (including our core US manufacturing), and rapid expansion capability,” he adds. “SAS’ investment in Transphorm is a testament to our leading position in the fast-growing GaN market and brings the total of new equity capital raised recently by Transphorm to $33m.”