Wafer inspection co Negevtech raises $36m

Negevtech president and CEO Dr. Arnon Gat: The money will be used to speed up penetration of the flash memory market.

Negevtech Ltd. today announced that it raised $36 million in its fourth financing round. The company’s existing shareholders participated in the round, including Intel Capital, which invested in the company six months ago, and Genesis Partners, Pitango Venture Capital, Star Ventures, and Lehman Brothers (NYSE:LEH). Prior investors Orbotech Ltd. (Nasdaq: ORBK) and Qualitau Ltd. (TASE: QLTU) did not participate in the present round.

Two new investors participated in the present round: Wellington Partners of Germany and Poalim Ventures. In addition to the financing round, Plenus Venture Lending Fund has extended Negevtech a $10 million credit line.

In September 2005, Negevtech closed the first part of the financing round, raising $26 million at an estimated company value of $54.5 million, before money.

Founded in 1999, Negevtech develops silicon wafer inspection equipment for semiconductors and flash memory processors. The company’s products are based on proprietary technology, which the company sells to semiconductor and flash memory processor makers who use them as a key quality control tool. Negevtech was founded by managing directors Dr. Gadi Neumann and David Alumot, both of whom were previously senior managers at Orbotech.

Negevtech president and CEO Dr. Arnon Gat said today that proceeds from the financing round would mainly be used to speed up penetration of the company’s products into the flash memory market, particularly the NAND flash memory processor market.

Negevtech declined to comment on the report. However, sources close to the company confirmed the financing round, and said they hoped it would be last round, which would lead towards an IPO in 2007.

Negevtech has 165 employees worldwide. The company’s headquarters and R&D center are in the Rehovot Science Park.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on April 30, 2006

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2006

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