STMicroelectronics history, profile and corporate video
STMicroelectronics is engaged in the design, development, manufacture, and marketing of semiconductor products including automotive products, computer peripherals, telecommunications systems, consumer products, industrial automation and control systems. It operates through the Semiconductors and Subsystems segments. The Semiconductors segment involves the design, development, manufacture, and marketing of products including discrete and standard commodity components, application-specific integrated circuits, full-custom devices and semi-custom devices, and application-specific standard products for analog, digital, and mixed-signal applications. The Subsystems segment includes the design, development, manufacture, and marketing subsystems and modules for the telecommunications, automotive and industrial markets including mobile phone accessories, battery chargers, Integrated Services Digital Network power supplies and in-vehicle equipment for electronic toll payment. The company was founded in June 1987 and is headquartered in Plan-Les-Ouates, Switzerland.“
STMicroelectronics was formed in 1987 by the merger of semiconductor companies SGS Microelettronica (Società Generale Semiconduttori) of Italy and Thomson Semiconducteurs, the semiconductor arm of France’s Thomson. At the time of the merger the company was known as SGS-THOMSON but took its current name in May 1998 following the withdrawal of Thomson SA as an owner.
SGS Microelettronica and Thomson Semiconducteurs were both long-established semiconductor companies. SGS Microelettronica originated in 1972 from a previous merger of two companies:
- ATES (Aquila Tubi e Semiconduttori), a vacuum tube and semiconductor maker headquartered in the Abruzzese city of l’Aquila, which in 1961 changed its name to Azienda Tecnica ed Elettronica del Sud and relocated its manufacturing plant to the outskirts of the Sicilian city of Catania
- Società Generale Semiconduttori (founded in 1957 by Adriano Olivetti).
Thomson Semiconducteurs was created in 1982 by the French government’s widespread nationalisation of industries. It included:
- the semiconductor activities of the French electronics company Thomson.
- Mostek, a US company founded in 1969 by some ex-employees of Texas Instruments.
- Silec, founded in 1977.
- Eurotechnique founded in 1979 in Rousset, Bouches-du-Rhône as a joint-venture between Saint-Gobain of France and US-based National Semiconductor.
- EFCIS, founded in 1977.
- SESCOSEM, founded in 1969.
After its creation by merger in 1987, SGS-Thomson was ranked 14th among the top 20 semiconductor suppliers with sales of around US$850 million. The company has participated in the consolidation of the semiconductor industry since its formation, with acquisitions including:
- In 1989, British company Inmos known for its transputer microprocessors from parent Thorn EMI.
- In 1994, Canada-based Nortel’s semiconductor activities.
- In 2002, Alcatel’s Microelectronics division, which along with the incorporation of smaller ventures such as UK company, Synad Ltd, helped the company expand into the Wireless-LAN market.
- In 2007, US-based Genesis Microchip. Genesis Microchip is known for their strength in video processing technology (Faroudja) and has design centres located in Santa Clara, Toronto, Taipei City, Taiwan R.O.C. and Bangalore.
On 8 December 1994, the company completed its initial public offering on the Paris and New York stock exchanges. Owner Thomson SA sold its stake in the company in 1998 when the company also listed on the Borsa Italiana in Milan.
In 2002, Motorola and TSMC joined ST and Philips in a new technology partnership. The Crolles2 Alliance was created with a new 12″ wafer manufacturing facility located inCrolles (France).
By 2005, STMicroelectronics was ranked fifth, behind Intel, Samsung, Texas Instruments and Toshiba, but ahead of Infineon, Renesas, NEC, NXP, and Freescale. The company was the largest European semiconductors supplier, ahead of Infineon and NXP (see Semiconductor sales leaders by year).
Early in 2007, NXP (formerly Philips Semiconductors) and Freescale (formerly Motorola Semiconductors) decided to stop their participation in Crolles2 Alliance. Under the terms of the agreement the Alliance came to an end on 31 December 2007.
On May 22, 2007, ST and Intel created a joint venture in the memory application called Numonyx. This new company merged ST and Intel Flash Memory activities.
Semiconductor market consolidation continued with ST and NXP announcing on April 10, 2008, the creation of a new joint venture of their mobile activities, with ST owning 80% of the new company and NXP 20%. This joint venture began on August 20, 2008.
On February 10, 2009 ST Ericsson, a joint venture bringing together ST-NXP Wireless and Ericsson Mobile Platforms, was established.
In 2011, STMicroelectronics announced the creation of a joint lab with Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies. The lab will focus on research and innovation in bio-robotics, smart systems and microelectronics. Past collaborations with Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies included DustBot, a platform that integrated self-navigating “service robots” for waste collection.”
*Information from Forbes.com and Wikipedia.org
**Video published on YouTube by “Al Long“