POET Technologies Inc. (TSX VENTURE:PTK) (POETF) - developer of the planar opto-electronic technology ("POET") platform for monolithic fabrication of integrated circuit devices containing both electronic and optical elements on a single semiconductor wafer - today announced the signing of a collaboration agreement with BAE Systems Microelectronics and corporate updates, in particular the formation of a "Technology Roadmap Advisory Board".
Collaboration Agreement with BAE
POET Technologies Inc. (the "Company") signed a contract with BAE Systems under which BAE Systems will provide non-exclusive third-party foundry services in support of the Company's "Lab-to-Fab" transition plan. The current phase of the work will be performed between March 2015 and August 2015. Key objectives of the collaboration include process transfer, prototype builds and design enablement kit development. Using BAE Systems' ISO Certified manufacturing facility will improve the quality, process control and analytical capacity of prototype builds. The result will be both a more manufacturable process and improved optimization of the device structures included in the POET technology.
Initial phases of the program will be performed using 3-inch wafers but from the onset the program will work towards the objective of achieving the full process flow on 6-inch wafers. Virtually all production GaAs-based processes are currently manufactured using 6-inch wafers. The Company believes that using BAE Systems' manufacturing and test capabilities will help the Company to build devices that dramatically demonstrate the disruptive nature of the technology.
"The POET technology incorporates silicon processes into GaAs integrated circuits, producing multifunction chips such as photonics and electronics that will provide enhanced commercial and military products," said Dr. P.C. Chao, Technical Director at BAE Systems. "Working with BAE Systems will enable the acceleration and maturation of the POET fabrication process for a faster prototype demonstration and a smoother transition to manufacturing."
Mr. Daniel DeSimone, POET's Chief Technology Officer noted: "Our agreement with BAE Systems is a significant step in our "Lab-to-Fab" transition. BAE Systems has a long history of high quality manufacturing with III-V materials, and brings process development expertise and manufacturing discipline to the relationship. We have collaborated with BAE Systems numerous times over the last 2 years, most recently to successfully transfer our most critical process loop into their facility. Encouraged by this track record, we are excited to be extending this collaboration to develop the full flow on 3-inch and later 6-inch wafers."
Formation of Technology Roadmap Advisory Board
The Company announces the formation of a "Technology Roadmap Advisory Board" comprising of Dr. Geoff Taylor, Ajit Manocha, and Tony Blevins. This Advisory Board collectively has extensive expertise in the semiconductor industry, supply chain management and operations, consumer products, and key technology markets, with over 100 years of combined experience.
This Advisory Board will act as advisors to the Board of Directors and the Executive team with primary focus on optimizing and accelerating the company's "Lab-to-fab" transition and commercialization plans. "The Company is looking forward to leveraging the newly formed Advisory Board's semiconductor market expertise and execution track record," said Mr. Peter Copetti, Executive Co-Chairman and interim CEO.
The Company intends to provide a full financial update with the filing of annual audited financial statements and Management Discussion and Analysis which will be issued in April. Further details of the aforementioned third party services contract will be provided at that time.
The Board approved the grant of 500,000 stock options to Mr. Daniel DeSimone, pursuant to the Company's stock option plan. Pursuant to TSX Venture Exchange policies, and based on market price, the exercise price of the options was at CA$1.65 per share and expire on March 30, 2020. The options will vest and be exercisable on the basis of 25% six months after the date of issue and 25% every six months thereafter. Dr. Geoff Taylor, POET's Chief Scientist noted: "Dan has been instrumental in recent successes and has advanced our engineering discipline and process methodology, benefitting our process IP development and prototype milestone activities."
About POET Technologies Inc.
POET Technologies is the developer of the POET platform for monolithic fabrication of integrated circuit devices containing both electronic and optical elements on a single semiconductor wafer. With head office in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and operations in Storrs, CT, the Company, through ODIS Inc., a U.S. company, designs III-V semiconductor devices for military, industrial and commercial applications, including infrared sensor arrays and ultra-low-power random access memory. The Company has several issued and pending patents for the POET process, with potential high speed and power-efficient applications in devices such as servers, tablet computers and smartphones. The Company's common shares trade on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol "PTK" and on the OTCQX under the symbol "POETF". For more information please visit our websites at www.poet-technologies.com.