COMPANY PRESS RELEASE: Applied Materials has announced that it has acquired all of the outstanding equity of Global Knowledge Services (GKS), Inc., a privately-held company based in Austin, Texas, that provides advanced data mining services to improve semiconductor manufacturing yield and efficiency.
This capability complements Applied Materials’ extensive line of inspection and methodical defect reduction solutions that enable chipmakers to quickly optimize production yields and achieve faster time to market for their products. This acquisition will be accounted for as a purchase, with GKS becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Applied Materials.
We believe the addition of GKS’ to our yield enhancement solutions represents a significant opportunity for Applied Materials to substantially enhance our value to customers, said Russell Ellwanger, vice president and general manager of Applied Materials’ Factory Productivity Solutions business group. Using information provided by GKS, fab managers can make decisions faster which potentially improve fab yields. By integrating Applied Materials’ process and diagnostic expertise with GKS’ data mining capabilities, we can provide customers with the ability to take system performance and yield productivity to the next level.
With its advanced data mining capabilities, GKS provides semiconductor manufacturers with an effective way to systematically analyze complex parametric, process inspection and equipment information, correlate it, pinpoint problem areas and then identify optimization actions. These opportunities are then presented in a secure, easy to view, customizable format to customers.
GKS’ advanced systems can reduce the time required to analyze data and accelerate the implementation of effective fab productivity and yield enhancement solutions, said Shawn Smith, co-founder of Global Knowledge Services, Inc. Combining GKS’ powerful analysis with Applied Materials’ process and yield management resources has the potential to redefine fab management methods of implementing new device yield and volume ramps while also engaged in meaningful baseline yield improvement activities.