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Ardian launches semiconductor investment platform

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Pioneering private equity investment platform dedicated to the semiconductor industry that will invest across the value chain focusing on Europe, with a unique approach combining Ardian’s expertise and world-class semiconductor leaders.

Ardian, a private investment house, is expanding into semiconductor investment with the launch of Ardian Semiconductor. This innovative platform will invest across the semiconductor value chain with a focus on Europe and will enable companies to grow into global leaders in their markets.

Semiconductor devices are pervasive in the world economy and are the critical enablers of the digital transformation and green transition of key sectors, such as data infrastructure, mobility, industrial and consumer. Following several decades of consistent mid to high single digit growth, industry analysts believe the semiconductor industry will continue to grow and reach $1 trillion by 2030, driven by predictable megatrends such as artificial intelligence, cloud computing, electrification and automation of mobility and industry, or smart & connected devices.

Europe is one of the most attractive regions to invest in the coming decade. European companies in the value chain are global leaders in semiconductors for the mobility and industrial end-markets that are experiencing rapid technological transformation and expected to grow the fastest. Europe also leads through its innovation ecosystems, IP, specialized equipment and materials companies, that underpin major megatrends such as the artificial intelligence revolution. Europe leverages strong foundations and attractive government incentives, including the €43 billion European Chips Act, to strengthen its leadership and benefit from an increased regionalization of the global supply chain.

Ardian Semiconductor aims at becoming the partner of choice of the European semiconductor value chain, bringing innovative and flexible capital solutions, as well as strategic and operational expertise, to companies with the potential to enable megatrends leveraging their distinctive technologies.

Ardian is launching the Ardian Semiconductor platform through an exclusive strategic partnership with Silian Partners, a team of highly successful senior executives from the semiconductor industry with more than 115 years of combined experience in the space, bringing unique industry relationships, strategic vision, and operational focus. Ardian and Silian Partners will work as One Team, and will bring together Ardian’s proven and successful private equity capabilities and investment processes with unparalleled industry leadership and expertise.

Ardian Semiconductor is managed by Ardian France. Silian Partners assists Ardian as an industry expert.

Ardian Semiconductor will be powered by a detailed analysis of technology megatrends and their implications across the semiconductor value chain. The team will work together to identify attractive opportunities, carry out expert due diligence, and work closely with entrepreneurs and management teams to define strategic roadmaps and execute.

This expansion builds on Ardian’s track record of investing in attractive high-growth sectors, in addition to its flagship investment activities.

“Semiconductors are everywhere and enable the world’s digital transformation and green transition. As demand for semiconductors is expected to more than double over the next decade, a whole supply chain needs to scale and bring continued innovation, including countless European mid-sized companies. We're assembling a unique team with tremendous experience and track-record, and I can't enjoy more than welcoming Paul, Christophe, Helmut and Thomas. It’s therefore the perfect time to launch Ardian Semiconductor, leveraging Europe’s leading positions in critical segments of the semiconductor value chain. Building on Ardian’s proven track record as a global private investment leader, the platform will bring innovative capital solutions to this strategic value chain at a pivotal moment, working alongside world-class industry leaders,” said Thibault Basquin, Member of the Executive Committee, Ardian.

“We are delighted to partner with Ardian, who perfectly understand the unique opportunity to address a critical need of the European semiconductor value chain and become its financial sponsor of choice. Through a bespoke strategic partnership, we bring together in One Team seasoned private equity investors, proven investment processes, and successful semiconductor leaders. Ardian is the ideal firm with the right people and culture to build this first-of-its-kind investment platform together. As we initiate dialogues with companies and entrepreneurs, we have confirmation that we enable solutions for the industry that do not exist today and that our approach will create significant value across the board,” said Paul Boudre, Senior Managing Director & Co-Founder of Silian Partners.

Silian Partners is led by:

• Paul Boudre, Senior Managing Director & Co-Founder, who brings c.35 years of semiconductor experience. As Chief Executive Officer of Soitec from 2015 to 2022, he successfully led the company through a restructuring and positioned it as a global leader of engineered semiconductor materials. Prior to Soitec, he held senior positions in semiconductor equipment and manufacturing with KLA, STMicroelectronics, IBM Microelectronics, Motorola Semiconductor and Atmel.

• Christophe Duverne, Senior Managing Director & Co-Founder, who has been a semiconductor and electronics executive for the past c.30 years. He was President and Chief Executive Officer of Linxens from 2010 to 2020, which he founded from a corporate carve-out, and led through two successful buyout transactions sponsored by CVC, Astorg and Bain Capital, to create a global leader in smart card components manufacturing. Prior to founding Linxens, he worked for over 10 years at NXP Semiconductors where he was Senior Vice President of the Identification business unit.

• Dr Helmut Gassel, Senior Managing Director & Co-Founder, who contributes c.30 years of semiconductor industry experience. He served as a member of Infineon’s Management Board as Chief Marketing Officer from 2016 to 2022 with responsibilities encompassing marketing, sales, strategy and M&A. In this capacity, he led the €9bn acquisition and integration of Cypress Semiconductor and contributed to transform Infineon into a global top 10 semiconductor company. Prior to joining Infineon in 1995 as a semiconductor design engineer, he worked in semiconductor research at Fraunhofer Institute.

• Thomas Pebay-Peyroula, Managing Director & Co-Founder, who brings c.15 years of investment banking experience and has advised many European semiconductor companies on strategic, M&A and financing matters. He is joining from Rothschild & Co, and started his career with Lazard.

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