IQE formally opens new Singapore Facility

04 November 2008

Singapore, 4th November 2008: IQE, the leading global supplier of advanced semiconductor wafer products and wafer services to the semiconductor industry, is pleased to announce formal opening of its new facility in Tampines, Singapore, following the relocation of its Asia manufacturing facility.

The new plant will continue to produce advanced semiconductor wafers for wireless applications such as mobile phones and WiFi devices but will also provide capacity for new products such as materials for advanced electronics and high-efficiency solar cells (photovoltaics).

During the last year, IQE’s MBE Technology subsidiary has been relocating its manufacturing operations from a site at the Singapore Science Park that it has occupied since its formation in 1993, to a new, state of the art facility within Singapore’s newest industrial development area in Tampines.

The new, purpose-built, high-tech 8,500 square metre facility houses over 2,000 square metres of specialised cleanroom and will allow for significant future expansion of IQE’s manufacturing capacity in the Far East.

In addition to the relocation of manufacturing tools from the original Singapore site, equipment has also been transferred from other parts of the group, particularly from the sister operation in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The carefully orchestrated relocation of manufacturing tools has been carried out in a way that has caused minimal disruption to existing production capacity.

The facility was opened by His Excellency Mr Paul Madden, British High Commissioner in Singapore, along with Dr Drew Nelson, Chief Executive Officer of IQE plc and Mr Lim Swee Nian, Executive Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board. The opening ceremony was attended by almost 200 guests comprising customers, suppliers and a number of contractors who had worked on the relocation project.

Mr L G Yeap, Managing Director and founder of IQE’s MBE Technology business in Singapore said:

“The opening of our new plant here today is the culmination of a major exercise to move plant and equipment from one site to another in a way that was seamless in terms of continuity of supply of products to our customers.

“It is with great thanks to the professionalism, dedication and support of our key customers, suppliers and contractors and the experience and support of agencies such as the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) that the whole process has been completed on time and with minimal impact on our production processes.

Commenting at the opening of the new plant, Dr Drew Nelson said:

“Whilst it is unclear at this point what the impact of the global financial crisis will have on the wireless communications industry, the long term demand drivers for the industry are as strong as ever and the demand for wireless products appears set to grow rapidly over the coming years and this new facility provides us with the capability to add capacity as and when required.

“This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the IQE Group which currently operates manufacturing facilities on a global basis; in the UK; the USA; and of course, the new facility here in Singapore.”

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Contacts:

IQE plc (+44 29 2083 9400)
Drew Nelson
Phil Rasmussen
Chris Meadows

College Hill (+44 20 7457 2020)
Adrian Duffield
Jon Davies

Noble & Company Limited (+44 20 7763 2200)
John Llewellyn-Lloyd
Sam Reynolds

Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited (+44 20 7459 3600)
Aubrey Powell
Ashton Clanfield



NOTE TO EDITORS

IQE is the leading global supplier of advanced semiconductor wafers with products that cover a diverse range of applications, supported by an innovative outsourced foundry services portfolio that allows the Group to provide a 'one stop shop' for the wafer needs of the world's leading semiconductor manufacturers.

IQE uses advanced crystal growth technology (epitaxy) to manufacture and supply bespoke semiconductor wafers ('epi-wafers') to the major chip manufacturing companies, who then use these wafers to make the chips which form the key components of virtually all high technology systems. IQE is unique in being able to supply wafers using all of the leading crystal growth technology platforms.

IQE's products are found in many leading-edge consumer, communication, computing and industrial applications, including a complete range of wafer products for the wireless industry, such as mobile handsets and wireless infrastructure, Wi-Fi, WiMAX, base stations, GPS, and satellite communications; optical communications, optical storage (CD, DVD), laser optical mouse, laser printers & photocopiers, thermal imagers, leading-edge medical products, barcode, high efficiency LEDs and a variety of advanced silicon based systems.

The manufacturers of these chips are increasingly seeking to outsource wafer production to specialist foundries such as IQE in order to reduce overall wafer costs and accelerate time to market.

IQE also provides bespoke R&D services to deliver customised materials for specific applications and offers specialist technical staff to manufacture to specification either at its own facilities or on the customer's own sites. The Group is also able to leverage its global purchasing volumes to reduce the cost of raw materials. In this way IQE's outsourced services, provide compelling benefits in terms of flexibility and predictability of cost, thereby significantly reducing operating risk.

IQE operates six manufacturing facilities located in Cardiff (two) and Milton Keynes in the UK; in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and Somerset, New Jersey in the USA; and Singapore. The Group also has 11 sales offices located in major economic centres worldwide.