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Electronics Production | February 10, 2009

Infineon to expand Hungarian operation

Infineon Technologies is expanding its manufacturing plant for power modules in Cegléd, Hungary, in response to increasing demand for renewable energy and traditional motor drive systems.
Through 2012, the company will invest around Euro 17 million in buildings and manufacturing equipment. Infineon today signed an agreement with representatives of Hungary’s Ministry of Economic Affairs under which the Ministry will provide Euro 1.4 million in project funding.

The Cegléd plant primarily produces standard power modules, which are key components used in wind turbines and solar inverters for photovoltaic systems, as well as in locomotive drives, streetcars, manufacturing plants, escalators and elevators. Cegléd is located around 80 kilometers to the southeast of Hungary’s capital, Budapest.

By 2012, Infineon plans to more than double the volume of modules (based on IGBT semiconductor devices) produced in Cegléd to around six million annually. At present, the plant employs around 470 people, including some 290 involved in producing IGBT modules. Infineon expects to increase employees working in IGBT module production to roughly 500 by 2012, when output reaches the six million unit annual goal. Manufacturing will begin in new buildings at the Cegléd plant in April 2009 after just ten months of construction work.

“Greater efficiency in the utilization of energy will become tomorrow’s most important energy resource, and Infineon chips and modules play a valuable role in minimizing power loss and maximizing power savings,” said Dr. Reinhard Ploss, member of the board and responsible for Operations at Infineon Technologies AG. “Expanding our Cegléd site, where we assemble and test power modules, is an important investment in the future, and the backing we receive from Hungary’s Ministry of Economic Affairs underscores Cegléd’s importance as a semiconductor manufacturing location for the Hungarian government.”

As global demand for energy expands and natural energy resources diminish, power electronics have a vital role to play in lowering electricity power consumption and reducing carbon emissions. According to a recent study titled “The Global Market for Power Semiconductor Discretes & Modules 2008” published by market research firm IMS Research, Infineon was ranked as the world market leader by revenue for the fifth consecutive year, with a share of 9.7 percent in a market worth a total US $13.6 billion in 2007.

Cegléd is a backend site shared by Infineon Technologies Cegléd Kft. and Infineon Technologies Bipoláris Kft.; the latter is a wholly owned subsidiary of Infineon Technologies Bipolar GmbH & Co KG, in Warstein, Germany, which is a joint venture of Infineon Technologies AG and Siemens AG. Besides IGBT modules, the Cegléd site also assembles and tests other components, including disk-type thyristors, diode discs, and bipolar modules. These are used in a range of industrial applications and, in particular, in power generation and distribution.

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