TSMC buys a stake in Dutch firm

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TSMC buys a stake in Dutch firm

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing has agreed to invest 1.11 billion euros ($1.4 billion) in ASML Holding, joining Intel in taking a stake in Europe’s largest chip-equipment maker to secure future technology.

TSMC will acquire a 5 percent equity holding in Veldhoven, Netherlands-based ASML for 838 million euros and invest 276 million more euros in research and development of next-generation lithography technologies, ASML said yesterday.

The purchase will give TSMC access to machines under development and reduce manufacturing costs for the Dutch company.

Intel, the world’s biggest chipmaker, last month agreed to invest as much as $4.1 billion in ASML’s so-called co-investment program to fund innovation.

The objective of the co-investment program “is to secure and accelerate key lithography technologies,” ASML CEO Eric Meurice said. “These technologies will benefit the entire industry and are not restricted to our co-investment partners.”

Meurice said last month ASML also was talking with Samsung Electronics about investing

Lucas van Grinsven, a spokesman for ASML, declined to comment on talks with Samsung. “What we can say is that the announcement of a second partner, TSMC, shows that the program is a success,” he said by phone.

Samsung Electronics will keep “good” cooperation with ASML and the collaboration can include investment, a Samsung official said July 27.

The Korean company is still weighing whether it will invest in ASML, Nam Ki-yung, a Seoul-based spokesman for Samsung, said yesterday.

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