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Technology Stocks : Watkins-Johnson

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To: geoffrey Wren who wrote (57)1/7/1998 3:35:00 PM
From: David Mckenna  Read Replies (1) of 75
 
Watkins-Johnson to Acquire Samsung Microwave Semiconductor, Inc.

January 6, 1998

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PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE) via Individual Inc. -- Jan. 5, 1998-- Watkins-Johnson Company (NYSE:WJ) announced today that it will purchase the assets of Samsung Microwave Semiconductor (SMS), Inc., based in Milpitas, Calif. SMS is a subsidiary of Samsung Semiconductor, Inc., which in turn is a unit of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. of Seoul, Korea. Financial terms of the acquisition were not released.

The SMS operation will become part of WJ's Wireless Products Group, currently based in Palo Alto, Calif. Watkins-Johnson plans to gradually transfer its Palo Alto semiconductor-manufacturing operations to the Milpitas facility where SMS is located.

"Our acquisition of SMS moves WJ toward the strategic objective of expanding our gallium-arsenide and thin-film manufacturing capability to enhance our position as a supplier of advanced radio-frequency devices to the wireless communications industry," said Malcolm J. Caraballo, president of Watkins-Johnson's Wireless Products Group.

Historically, WJ has produced semiconductor devices primarily for its own use. In 1997, WJ began offering its highly linear, high-performance gallium-arsenide products to external customers. The addition of Samsung's Milpitas fabrication facility increases the company's capacity to produce devices in sufficient quantity to serve as a merchant supplier to the greater wireless products market. Under the agreement, WJ also receives non-exclusive license to manufacture SMS products and service SMS customers.

Watkins-Johnson Company specializes in wireless-telecommunications products and semiconductor-manufacturing equipment. In addition to the Wireless Products Group in Palo Alto, Calif., the company maintains engineering and manufacturing facilities in Gaithersburg, Md., and Scotts Valley and San Jose, Calif. Sales in 1996 exceeded $438 million, of which $349 million represents continuing operations after the divestiture of the firm's Palo Alto, Calif.-based defense-electronics unit on October 31, 1997.

CONTACT: Watkins-Johnson Company | Frank E. Emery, 650/813-2752 (financial) | Stephen B. Witmer, 650/813-2417 (media) | R.E. "Skip" Hoover, 650/813-2375 (products)

[Copyright 1998, Business Wire
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