FormFactor drops Singapore manufacturing, keeps Japan and CA

(September 14, 2010 - Marketwire) — FormFactor Inc. (NASDAQ: FORM) is ceasing its transition of manufacturing operations to Singapore. The wafer probe company’s decision will result in a reduction in force of approximately 70 employees at its Singapore facility. Manufacturing that was planned for Singapore will stay in Livermore, CA.

The decision does not impact the company’s other Singapore activities, including its Design Engineering and Design Technology groups or its Finance Service Center, although certain of the local internal company support functions will be resized in light of the manufacturing decision. The manufacturing activities that were scheduled to be transitioned to Singapore will remain in Livermore, and Livermore will continue as the largest manufacturing operation for the company. The Singapore manufacturing decision does not impact the current manufacturing activities in Japan. The company expects that the activities comprising the reduction in force will be substantially completed by the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010.

Meanwhile, FormFactor also has named Tom St. Dennis as its new CEO, with Carl Everett taking the executive chairman role on the company’s board of directors. St. Dennis has no lack of experience in the industry, having spent a number of years at Applied Materials in the 1990s, then jumped to Wind River Systems and then Novellus in 2003. He rejoined Applied in mid-2006, eventually becoming GM of its silicon systems group, before announcing his resignation in Sept. 2009.

FormFactor has seen its share of volatility lately. Its CEO and CFO resigned in May of this year, with board member and former Intel MPU exec G. Carl Everett Jr. taking the reins temporarily. And while the semiconductor equipment sector overall has been enjoying boom times, FormFactor seems not so lucky. In June it announced an 8% workforce reduction; and last month the company lowered its outlook for 3Q10 to $46M-$48M vs. "low- to mid-$50M" expectations. FORM opened a new wafer-probe facility in Singapore just six months ago.

In the second quarter of fiscal 2010, the company announced a series of corporate initiatives that represented a renewed focus on streamlining and simplifying its operations as well as reducing its quarterly operating costs. Those corporate initiatives included consolidating certain manufacturing operations by moving the assembly and testing operation from Korea to Livermore. The company’s decision announced today to cease the Singapore manufacturing transition is consistent with its plan to simplify business processes and get back to basics in order to return the company to profitability. In addition to costs the company will incur to cease Singapore manufacturing, the decision will impact the remaining useful life of certain assets, including leasehold improvements, in its Singapore facility.

FormFactor, Inc. (NASDAQ: FORM) supplies advanced wafer probe cards, which are used by semiconductor manufacturers to electrically test ICs. The company’s wafer sort, burn-in and device performance testing products move IC testing upstream from post-packaging to the wafer level. For more information, visit

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