San’an Opto Swaps FOREPI Shares to Acquire Stake in Epistar

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Top Chinese LED manufacturer San’an Opto has swapped its shares in FOREPI for leading Taiwanese LED chip maker Epistar shares, the Investment Commission of Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) announced Tuesday.

The company converted all of its 19.77% share in FOREPI for a 3.1% stake in Epistar, the commission announced. FOREPI was acquired by Epistar on June 30 this year, and according to the merger agreement the swap ratio was set at 3.448 FOREPI shares for every Epistar share.

San'an Opto's 3.1% stake in Epistar is insufficient to make it a permanant board member, said Rider Chang, spokesperson and Chief Financial Officer of Epistar in an earlier report in July this year.

Taiwan’s MOEA has attached certain conditions to San’an Opto’s investment in Epistar. Restrictions placed on San'an Opto include prohibiting headhunting Epistar staff, banning the company from requesting transfer of LED and related technology from Epistar, and preventing the company from acquiring management rights. If San’an Opto violates any of the terms, it will be asked to withdraw its investment in Epistar.

Whether San’an Opto can keep to the terms listed by MOEA remains to be seen. The company has a record of headhunting talent from Taiwanese LED manufacturers, including from main competitors Epistar and Genesis Photonics Inc.

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