In a brief news release from Intel this afternoon, the chip firm has announced that it has closed on the first stage of its deal to sell its SSD business to SK hynix. As of today, SK hynix has now formally acquired the bulk of Intel’s NAND and SSD businesses, as well as the company’s NAND fab in Dalian, China. Intel will continue to hold a small stake until 2025, and in the meantime Intel’s former SSD assets have been spun-off into a new SK hynix subsidiary, Solidigm.

The Intel-SK hynix deal was first announced in October of 2020, with the two companies inking a deal to transfer over Intel’s NAND and SSD operations over to SK hynix over a several year timeframe. The deal, valued at $9 billion, would see Intel retain all of their Optane/3D XPoint technology and patents, while SK Hynix would receive all of Intel’s NAND-related business, including the Dalian NAND fab and Intel’s SSD business interests.

Now, with approval of the deal from all of the necessary regulatory bodies, the two companies have been able to close on the first part of the deal. The “first closing,” as Intel puts it, has transferred the Dalian fab as well as part of Intel’s SSD IP portfolio to SK hynix. Some employees are also being transferred – essentially all those who aren't working for the fab or are involved in R&D. In return, SK hynix has paid Intel the first $7 billion of the deal.

The rest of the deal is set to close in three and a half years from now, in or around March of 2025. From now until then, Intel will continue to use the Dalian fab to manufacture NAND wafers. To do so, Intel has held on to some of their NAND-related IP, their R&D employees, and the fab employees. All of those assets will then finally be transferred to SK hynix once the deal fully closes and SK hynix pays Intel the final $2 billion.

Finally, SK hynix is taking the Intel assets they’ve acquired thus far and placing them into a new spin-off company, Solidigm. The standalone subsidiary, whose name is apparently a play on “paradigm” and “solid state storage” has set up shop in San Jose, and is being run by former Intel Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group SVP and GM, Rob Crooke. Solidigm, in turn, has inherited Intel’s current NAND SSD product lineup; this includes Intel’s 660p and 670p client SSDs, as well as their D3/D5/D7 data center SSDs, which are now in the process of becoming Solidigm products.

Source: Intel

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  • stanleyipkiss - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    Pretty crappy name right there.
    And I was just warming up to Toshiba's "Kioxia" re-branding/spin-off
  • Mr Perfect - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    Oh, I dunno. The new company name sounds enough like Cyberdyne from Terminator 2 to trigger some nostalgia.
  • Pneumothorax - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    The English language is running out of non trademarked names. Look at the ridiculous drug names they’re coming up with now.
  • FunBunny2 - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    "Look at the ridiculous drug names they’re coming up with now. "

    yeah, but it pays well. the sort of job I always wanted. not so cool as "Six Days of the Condor", though.
  • Oxford Guy - Friday, December 31, 2021 - link

    Switch to Klingon.
  • spaceship9876 - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    Sounds like a bad deal for SK Hynix.
  • FwFred - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    Last quarter NSG/Solidigm (now that Optane is no longer included) was very profitable making $442M in profit off $1.1B revenue. The efficiencies of the merger should make this new company more profitable over time.
  • Drumsticks - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    So if they can just manage to sustain that, *napkin math* it’ll take in the realm of 5 years to break even (1.6B profit a year. Ignoring quarterly fluctuations etc. napkin math!)

    In all honesty, thats better than plenty of acquisitions that appear to need decades to pay off.
  • FunBunny2 - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    "it’ll take in the realm of 5 years to break even "

    considering what Treasuries are going for these days, it's a steal.
  • Wereweeb - Thursday, December 30, 2021 - link

    Yeah, on the contrary, Intel is just throwing away their SSD group.

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