cREO™ Semiconductor Technology


Silex subsidiary Translucent Inc developed a novel set of semiconductor materials known as ‘crystalline Rare Earth Oxides’ (cREOTM) for application to the manufacturing of next generation devices in the semiconductor, digital communications and power electronics industries.  Following the extensive pursuit of business development options for Translucent, an exclusive License and Assignment Agreement was signed with UK-based IQE Plc (LON:IQE) in September 2015.  IQE is the global leader in the design and manufacture of advanced semiconductor wafer products.

In accordance with the 2015 agreement, IQE elected to purchase the cREOTM technology in March 2018.

The Translucent - IQE Agreement

Following the signing of the exclusive License and Assignment Agreement with UK-based IQE in September 2015, an initial license fee of US$1.4 million was paid by IQE in March 2016 after the transfer of the cREOTM technology to IQE’s Greensboro, North Carolina manufacturing facility.  In accordance with the Agreement, the inital product development and commercialisation activities were conducted by IQE during a 30-month option and license period and IQE elected to exercise the right to purchase the technology in March 2018. A further US$5 million is due to be paid to Translucent within six months of the option exercise in either cash or IQE stock. 
More importantly, the potential commercial applications that IQE have identified for the technology may result in an attractive perpetual royalty of up to 6% of revenues generated by IQE from use of the cREO™ technology.

Following the successful transfer of Translucent’s unique epitaxy equipment and associated cREO™ technology to IQE’s North Carolina production facility in 2016, effort and focus has been applied to product development for several applications of the unique cREO™ technology.

IQE have continued to make good progress and are meeting target development milestones for initial products utilising the cREO™ materials. The product development program involves using two of Translucent's production reactors to produce various cREO™ templates on silicon wafers for trialling within the IQE Group and select commercial partners, with initial focus on wireless communications devices and power electronics devices. In light of this progress, IQE has determined an optimal route to commercialisation within a 2 to 3-year timeframe.

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