Cypress buys CMOS sensors

Cypress Semiconductor is to acquire FillFactory, a Belgium-based leader in active pixel CMOS image sensor technology, for $100 million.

FillFactory’s products, which are based on a proprietary pixel architecture, include a 13.85-megapixel sensor that is used in Kodak’s new DCS line of professional digital cameras and a 100 x 135 mm sensor for mammography applications that takes up an entire eight-inch wafer.

FillFactory posted sales of $6.0 million and profit before tax of $1.3 million in the quarter ended March 31, 2004.

The transaction, which is targeted to close in the 2004 third quarter, is expected to be accretive to Cypress’s proforma earnings. Cypress expects the acquisition to be accretive in 2004, excluding the cost of acquisition-related intangibles.

The demand for CMOS image sensors – is growing rapidly, driven by a swift expansion of the market for digital still cameras (DSCs) and cell phone cameras.

According to a Q204 report by the El Segundo, CA-based semiconductor research firm iSuppli, the 78-million-unit market for CMOS sensors in 2003 is projected to expand at an annual rate of more than 40% through 2008.