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Crossing Automation Acquires the Assets of Asyst Technologies

Published on August 3, 2009 at 9:33 AM

Crossing Automation, Inc., today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the assets of Asyst Technologies' atmospheric technologies and IP including the sorter, EFEM (equipment front end module) and RFID products. Crossing's existing investment partners Tallwood Venture Capital and Intel Capital continue to support the company's expansion. Specific terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Industry veteran Robert MacKnight, as Executive Chairman at Crossing Automation, will lead the integration process folding Asyst's hardware, service and spares assets and personnel into Crossing's wafer-level automation business. Since the launch of its ExpressConnect(TM) and ExpressSolutions(TM) capabilities earlier this year, Crossing has been actively working to expand the company into the atmospheric wafer handling and automation areas of semiconductor manufacturing. The acquisition of Asyst's strong product set, along with its existing global sales and service capabilities, offered an ideal opportunity to Crossing to enter this market space in a leading position.

"This deal makes good sense in terms of synergy, leverage and opportunity," commented MacKnight. "Crossing has gone from start-up to an established player overnight by acquiring this technology. The new entity has an established customer base that has both vacuum and atmospheric automation requirements and we foresee a great opportunity to bring real value to the OEM community with a complementary tool set."

"This move demonstrates how serious we and our investors are in relation to the market and the opportunity that exists," stated Jed Keller, President and CEO for Crossing Automation. "As a combined entity we will be better positioned to engage mainstream semiconductor equipment companies with a complete automation solution set. We will continue to pursue a model focused on the process equipment market that brings greater value and flexibility to these customers while offering a larger set of modular building blocks that will drive down costs through innovation and scale."

Crossing Automation delivers efficient, cost-effective integrated vacuum wafer handling systems and engineering support to high volume manufacturers of vacuum process tools, including etch, CVD, clean, RTP and metrology. Crossing's ExpressSolutions engineering services offers system integration and custom design engineering to optimize wafer-level automation systems that implement the company's ExpressConnect automation modules and subsystems. The company's unique approach enables its customers to develop process-specific wafer transport solutions for multi-platform strategies at a significantly lower cost than current approaches. Offering an alternative to conventional "cluster tool" technology, Crossing achieves critical manufacturing flexibility for OEMs and IC manufacturers alike.

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