Insolvency proceedings for Qimonda opened

Posted on Wednesday, Apr 01 2009 @ 19:10 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
As insolvent German memory maker Qimonda failed to find investors in time, insolvency proceedings have been opened today by insolvency administrator Dr. Michael Jaffé. The Dresden plant has been put on hold, mass production has been halted but could be resumed quickly if an investor materializes.
Dr. Jaffé and his team are continuing discussions with potential interested parties. The aim is to preserve the Qimonda sites and as many jobs as possible in Dresden, Munich and Portugal. Consultations with political bodies in Bavaria, Saxony, the Federal Republic of Germany, Portugal and the EU concerning support for a potential continuation of operations are running in parallel. The prerequisite for such support is the engagement of an “anchor” investor in a new Qimonda. The outcome of these discussions remains open.

A central condition for the continuation of talks with investors was the successful formation of transfer companies for the employees in Dresden and Munich. About 600 employees in Munich and about 1,850 employees in Dresden accepted the offer made last week to join the transfer company on April 1, 2009. Compared to the total number of employees who had received such an offer, this translates into an acceptance of 84 percent for Munich and 93 percent for Dresden, where a corresponding offer was made. The transfer company guarantees the employees net wages on the basis of compensation for reduced hours, with a supplement of 10 percent over a maximum period of 4 ½ months until mid–August 2009. Depending on the employee’s marital status, this corresponds to about 70 or 77 percent of the net wages that had been paid prior to insolvency.

With the opening of the insolvency procedures, a highly qualified core team, consisting initially of about 340 employees in Munich and about 575 employees in Dresden continues to work and is ensuring that the business organization with all related central functions remains in place. Additionally, Qimonda’s leading edge Buried Wordline Technology is being maintained and partially further developed. Qimonda continued to drive technology advancements during the preliminary insolvency period and invested liquidity for the development of its 46nm Buried Wordline Technology in agreement with the creditors committee.

Since filing for insolvency on January 23, 2009, it was possible to continue operations at Munich, Dresden and at a large number of subsidiaries worldwide despite the difficult parameters and the highly complex structure of the international corporate group. Liquidity of both entities in Germany could be ensured and operations could be continued, albeit at a reduced level, during the preliminary insolvency proceedings through strict cost management and the abandonment of loss-making activities. As a result, Qimonda was able to record revenues of more than Euro 90 million during the period of the preliminary insolvency despite the extremely weak market environment.

Mass production of memory chips at Dresden is on hold starting April 1, 2009. The equipment will be put into a stand-by mode. Experts will maintain the sophisticated machinery in order to protect it from damage during the stand-by period. If an investor solution materializes, production could be resumed.

No final decisions have been reached as yet with regard to the future structure of the company. This also applies to a decision over whether parts of the business which are able to continue operations will be transferred to a new company belonging to new investors. In this case, or if no investors can be found to finance Qimonda's continued operation, Qimonda AG, which has been legally dissolved with the opening of insolvency proceedings, would most likely be liquidated. In case of a liquidation of Qimonda AG, it is expected, based on the current state of affairs, that the shareholders of Qimonda AG will not receive any payments on their shares after the finalization of the insolvency proceedings and the distribution of any remaining insolvency assets to the creditors. No statement can be made at this time regarding any such distribution to creditors.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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