Blaze DFM and Aprio Technologies Announce Agreement to Merge

SUNNYVALE, Calif.—(BUSINESS WIRE)—February 21, 2007— Blaze DFM, the electrical DFM company, announced today that they have signed a letter of intent to merge with Aprio Technologies, a technology leader in providing design for manufacturability (DFM) solutions to the semiconductor industry. The integration of Aprio's analysis and simulation engines into the Blaze product line enables Blaze to offer the industry's only comprehensive electrical DFM solution. Financial terms of the agreement were not announced. The merger is expected to be finalized within the next few weeks.

"In the last couple of years, we've seen some DFM companies absorbed by either equipment manufacturers or by EDA companies," said Jacob Jacobsson, president and CEO at Blaze. "We believe that a pure play DFM company, one that understands both design and manufacturing, adds significant value to the semiconductor eco-system. Blaze's business is booming and our sales pipeline is exceptionally strong. These factors, together with the strength of Aprio's technology, are what propelled this merger."

The merged company will retain the name, Blaze DFM, Inc. and will be headquartered at Blaze's current location in Sunnyvale, California. The company will retain Aprio's international offices in Japan and Taiwan. Blaze also has an office in San Diego, Calif.

Dr. Clive Wu, Aprio's co-founder and CEO, joins Dr. Andrew B. Kahng, co-founder and chairman at Blaze, in the Office of the Chief Technologist. Mark Fournival, vice president of worldwide sales at Aprio, becomes vice president of sales. All remaining Blaze executives will retain their current titles and responsibilities.

"This merger is a huge win for our customers," said Dr. Wu. "It is evident that our visions for DFM are in complete alignment, and that our technologies are complementary. This helps significantly in accelerating the realization of our collective vision."

"Aprio's technology is unique in that it is accurate enough for signoff litho simulation and fast enough for design optimization," said Dr. Andrew B. Kahng, co-founder, chairman and Chief Technologist at Blaze. "The combination of Aprio and Blaze will result in the most complete electrical DFM solution available from any source."

Aprio's litho simulation engine is unique in the industry in that it is both highly accurate and very fast due to its ability to work incrementally. Some commercially available litho simulation engines work with abstracted data, and are therefore not accurate enough for electrical DFM purposes. Others are highly accurate but are too slow to be used during the design process. Aprio's engine is the only one that is both accurate enough and fast enough to meet the needs of a comprehensive electrical DFM solution.

The combination of Aprio's analysis and simulation technology together with Blaze's electrical analysis and optimization capabilities provide chip designers with the ability to model, predict, and compensate for systematic variations in advanced silicon process technologies. The result is tighter control over process variation and dramatic improvements in parametric yield and time to volume production. This also lays the ground work for enablement of statistical analysis and optimization tools in the future.

About Blaze DFM

Blaze DFM provides software solutions to fabless semiconductor companies, integrated device manufacturers, and silicon foundries. Blaze products give IC designers greater control over manufacturing variability, improving yield and shortening time to volume production. Blaze DFM, Inc., 1275 Orleans Drive, Sunnyvale, CA 94089, 408.470.4900, www.blaze-dfm.com

About Aprio

Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Santa Clara, California, Aprio Technologies Inc. is a leader in design for manufacturability (DFM) solutions that ensure successful design and fabrication of nanometer technology semiconductor devices. At the core of Aprio's offerings is its unique capability to provide correct and accurate manufacturing information to designers, and design intent to manufacturing engineers. Aprio's products leverage this capability to help designers create more reliable and better yielding semiconductor devices without the need for dramatic changes to their existing design or tapeout flows. For more information, visit Aprio's web site at www.aprio.com

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