Cree and Lextar Electronics Announce LED Cooperation

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Proposed $83 million investment by Cree to provide additional LED supply

DURHAM, NC -- Cree, Inc. (Nasdaq: CREE), a market leader in LED lighting, and Lextar Electronics Corporation (TAIEX: 3698), today announced that the companies have entered into an agreement whereby Cree will make an investment in Lextar and the companies will enter into a supply agreement for sapphire-based LED chips. As part of the agreement, Cree will invest approximately $83 million to purchase 83 million Lextar shares at a price of NT$30 per share. Lextar and Cree will also enter into a long-term LED chip supply agreement, as well as a royalty-bearing license agreement for certain Cree LED chip and component intellectual property. Upon closing of the investment, Cree will own approximately 13% of Lextar.

“We are excited to be strengthening our relationship with Lextar to enable growth in LEDs and Lighting,” stated Chuck Swoboda, Cree Chairman and CEO. “Working with Lextar to supply high-quality, mid-power LED chips enables Cree to focus its resources on the high-performance, high-power LED chips that differentiate Cree LEDs in the market. This approach provides the operational and financial flexibility to help Cree achieve the best return on our people and invested capital.”

“Lextar has established a strong technology position and customer base in the mid-power backlighting LED segment, while Cree has had outstanding performance in the high-power LED component and lighting markets,” said Dr. David Su, Chairman and CEO of Lextar. “We are very excited about this new cooperation with Cree. We strongly believe this new collaboration will increase the competitiveness of our products and technology, enabling both companies continued growth in the LED lighting market. Furthermore, the cross license of LED chip and component intellectual property will afford both Cree and Lextar the benefits from our product and technology development, thereby strengthening our mutual competitiveness in the global LED industry.”

The agreement has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is targeted to close in Cree’s second quarter of fiscal year 2015, subject to the approval of Lextar’s shareholders and the Taiwan Investment Committee, and other customary closing conditions.   

About Cree

Cree is leading the LED lighting revolution and making energy-wasting traditional lighting technologies obsolete through the use of energy-efficient, mercury-free LED lighting. Cree is a market-leading innovator of lighting-class LEDs, LED lighting and semiconductor products for power and radio-frequency (RF) applications.

Cree's product families include LED fixtures and bulbs, blue and green LED chips, high-brightness LEDs, lighting-class power LEDs, power-switching devices and RF devices. Cree products are driving improvements in applications such as general illumination, electronic signs and signals, power supplies and solar inverters.

About Lextar Electronics

Lextar Electronics Corp. (TAIEX: 3698), founded in 2008 in Taiwan, is a subsidiary of AU Optronics, the world-class TFT-LCD and solar PV manufacturer.  Lextar specializes in manufacturing high-brightness LED epitaxial, chips and packages, as well as energy-saving and smart lighting products. The range of applications includes LCD backlighting, LED light module, LED light source and luminaires. The company now houses nearly 3,500 employees and its headquarters is in the Hsinchu Science Park, Taiwan. Lextar has three manufacturing sites in Taiwan, and two in Suzhou and Xiamen respectively in China. Lextar’s turnover in 2013: USD 462 million. Corporate website: Lextar.com 


This press release contains forward-looking statements involving risks and uncertainties, both known and unknown, that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated. Actual results may differ materially due to a number of factors, including obtaining required stockholder and regulatory approvals of the transaction, and the timing thereof; the effects of disruption from the transaction making it more difficult to maintain relationships with customers, suppliers or other business partners for both companies; customer acceptance of new products; the rapid development of new technology and competing products that may impair demand or render Cree’s products obsolete; and other factors discussed in Cree’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its report on Form 10-K for the year ended June 29, 2014, and subsequent filings.

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