Friday, October 26, 2012

Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU): U.S.Judge threatens to derail Elpida’s sale over lack of transparency

Bankrupt semiconductors maker Elpida Memory's proposed sale to Micron Technology, Inc.(NASDAQ:MU) is in some jeopardy with a U.S. judge expressing concerns over the company's lack of transparency and its inadequate efforts to keep investors informed about its bankruptcy process.

Japanese chipmaker Elpida's bankruptcy case is being heard parallely in both Tokyo as well as in Delaware. The U.S. bankruptcy court said that the company was taking a risk in not keeping its creditors informed about the process.

"I don't have a problem tanking a case," Judge Christopher Sontchi said at a court hearing in Wilmington on Wednesday. Sontchi will eventually have to approve the transfer of US assets after a sale is cleared by the Japanese court.

The Japanese firm, which is among the last few semiconductor stalwarts in the country, was pushed into bankruptcy on weak demand and more competition from overseas chip makers.

Globally computer chipmaker =s are passing through tough times as the world is moving away from traditional computing systems such as desktops and laptop, to mobile devices and tablet PCs.

Elpida proposed a $2.5-billion sale to America's Micron, based in Boise, Idaho, as a way to repay creditors. This deal will make Micron the No. 2 DRAM chipmaker in the market behind Samsung Electronics.

Elpida's creditors include hedge funds Linden Advisors, Owl Creek Asset Management and Taconic Capital Advisors, who have said the $2.5-billion price tag grossly valuation undervalues the firm, arguing that Elpida is worth 300 billion yen ($3.78 billion).

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