PRI Automation Selected to Provide $22 Million Integrated Solution To Automate Tower Semiconductor's New Fab

Contract includes full integration of a complete suite of factory

automation products



Apr 30, 2001, 01:00 ET from PRI Automation, Inc.

    BILLERICA, Mass., April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- PRI Automation, Inc.
 (Nasdaq:   PRIA), a global leader in advanced automation systems, software, and
 services to the semiconductor industry, today announced it has been selected
 by Tower Semiconductor (Nasdaq:   TSEM, TASE: TOWER) to provide an integrated
 solution consisting of factory automation systems, software, and services for
 Tower's new Fab 2 in Migdal Haemek, Israel.  Tower is a foundry semiconductor
 manufacturer, strategically focused on advanced Flash memory and CMOS Image
 Sensor technologies.
     Under the terms of the purchase agreement, expected to total approximately
 $22 million over four years, PRI will supply Tower with an automated material
 handling system (AMHS), factory management software products, as well as
 systems integration and support services including:
 
     Software Systems
     -- PROMIS(R) manufacturing execution system (MES) software
     -- TransNet(TM) material control software (MCS)
     -- Promis Encore!(R) modules including Encore! Composer(TM)
     -- Encore! FAbuilder(TM) equipment integration and station control
        software
 
     Hardware Systems
     -- AeroTrak(TM) overhead monorail transport systems
     -- TurboStocker(TM) wafer storage systems
     -- Guardian(TM) bare reticle storage systems
 
     Integration Services and Support
     -- Software system architecture, planning and design
     -- Software system implementation and integration services
     -- AMHS planning and design
     -- Installation and post installation services and support
 
     "We selected PRI Automation because of their unique ability to deliver a
 cost effective integrated solution for our demanding automated material
 handling, manufacturing control and information management needs," commented
 Ron Niv, manager of Fab 2 operations at Tower.
     "This order is significant because it represents a complete solution
 consisting of hardware, software, and services," said Mitch Tyson, PRI's
 president and CEO. "PRI is unique in being able to integrate all of these
 critical components into a solution that improves the productivity of
 semiconductor manufacturing operations in today's high volume production fab."
     Foundry semiconductor manufacturers are faced with difficult manufacturing
 challenges because there are a greater variety of products with higher numbers
 of hot lots in production at any given time, compared with traditional
 integrated device manufacturers (IDMs).  PRI has extensive experience working
 with the world's largest semiconductor foundries and understands these
 challenges.  The scope of the Tower Semiconductor project gives PRI the
 opportunity to apply all of its domain expertise in factory automation and
 factory management software systems to help Tower implement an efficient and
 productive manufacturing operation.
     PRI is responsible for implementing an integrated factory automation
 environment that will automate the entire manufacturing process.  The solution
 consists of wafer and reticle transportation and storage, factory management
 software, including material control software (MCS) to manage and direct the
 wafer and reticle material handling systems, manufacturing execution system
 (MES) software to direct and control the manufacturing operation, collect in-
 line data for process control and yield enhancement, and equipment interface
 software for process tool communication and station control.
     PRI will be designing the software systems architecture and providing the
 software integration and support services required for installing and
 implementing the PRI supplied software and hardware components into Tower's
 manufacturing environment. This effort will be enhanced by PRI's significant
 integration experience working on hundreds of CIM implementation projects
 around the world.
 
     About Tower Semiconductor
     Tower Semiconductor Ltd. is an independent wafer manufacturer,
 strategically focused on advanced Flash memory and CMOS Image Sensor
 technologies. Tower provides manufacturing and turnkey services for integrated
 circuits (IC) on silicon wafers in geometries from 1.0 to 0.35 micron, using
 its advanced technological capabilities and the proprietary designs of its
 customers.
     Tower recently began construction of an advanced fab adjacent to its
 current facility in Migdal Haemek, Israel. The new fab, referred to as "Fab
 2," will employ approximately 1,000 employees and produce up to 33,000 200-mm
 wafers per month in geometries of 0.18 micron and below, using advanced CMOS
 technology from Toshiba. For additional information please visit
 www.TowerSemi.com.
 
     About PRI Automation
     PRI Automation, Inc., headquartered in Billerica, Massachusetts, is the
 leading global supplier of advanced factory automation systems, software, and
 service to semiconductor manufacturers and OEM equipment suppliers.  PRI is
 the only company to provide a tightly integrated and flexible hardware and
 software solution that optimizes the flow of materials and information
 throughout the fab improving the productivity of semiconductor manufacturing.
 The company has thousands of systems installed at hundreds of locations
 throughout the world.  For more information visit PRI online at www.pria.com.
 
     Safe Harbor Statement
     This release includes forward-looking statements, including, without
 limitation, statements relating to the expected benefits of PRI Automation
 products. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and
 uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those
 expressed or implied by such statements.  Such risks and uncertainties
 include; (i) the manner in which the customer uses the products and integrates
 them with other third party components; (ii) the ability of the company to
 continue to successfully develop and market new products and product
 enhancements on a timely basis; (iii) completing the construction of Tower's
 new wafer manufacturing facility, (iv) conditions in the market for foundry
 manufacturing services and in the market for semiconductor products generally,
 (v) successful completion of the development and/or transfer of advanced CMOS
 process technologies to be utilized in Tower's new Fab, (vi) market acceptance
 and competitiveness of the products to be manufactured by Tower using these
 technologies; (vii) ramp-up at Tower's new fabrication facility. (viii) the
 cyclicality of the semiconductor industry and the rapid technological change
 that characterizes the industry in which the Company competes; (ix)
 uncertainties affecting global markets and currencies, the effects of possible
 delays by semiconductor manufacturers in the adoption of 300 mm wafer
 manufacturing and other new technologies, (x) changes in our product sales
 mix; (xi) competitive factors, such as introduction of new products or
 technologies by our competitors, and pricing pressures; (xii) the possible
 impact of any mergers and acquisitions activity by the Company and its ability
 to successfully integrate and operate any acquired businesses; (xiii) business
 and economic conditions affecting the semiconductor manufacturing equipment
 industry generally; (xiv) and other factors identified in our registration
 statement on Form S-3, file number 333-34584, as filed with the Securities and
 Exchange Commission on April 12, 2000 and amended thereafter.  We assume no
 obligation to update any forward-looking information contained in this
 release.
 
      Media Contact:
      Dave Anderson
      Stauch Vetromile & Mitchell
      401-438-0614
      dave@svmmarcom.com
 
      PRI Contact:
      Jeffrey Nestel-Patt
      PRI Automation
      978-670-4270
      jnestel-patt@pria.com
 
      Tower Contact:
      Udi Efrat
      Tower
      +972-4-650-6203
      udief@TowerSemi.com
 
                      MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X18716715
 
 

SOURCE PRI Automation, Inc.
    BILLERICA, Mass., April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- PRI Automation, Inc.
 (Nasdaq:   PRIA), a global leader in advanced automation systems, software, and
 services to the semiconductor industry, today announced it has been selected
 by Tower Semiconductor (Nasdaq:   TSEM, TASE: TOWER) to provide an integrated
 solution consisting of factory automation systems, software, and services for
 Tower's new Fab 2 in Migdal Haemek, Israel.  Tower is a foundry semiconductor
 manufacturer, strategically focused on advanced Flash memory and CMOS Image
 Sensor technologies.
     Under the terms of the purchase agreement, expected to total approximately
 $22 million over four years, PRI will supply Tower with an automated material
 handling system (AMHS), factory management software products, as well as
 systems integration and support services including:
 
     Software Systems
     -- PROMIS(R) manufacturing execution system (MES) software
     -- TransNet(TM) material control software (MCS)
     -- Promis Encore!(R) modules including Encore! Composer(TM)
     -- Encore! FAbuilder(TM) equipment integration and station control
        software
 
     Hardware Systems
     -- AeroTrak(TM) overhead monorail transport systems
     -- TurboStocker(TM) wafer storage systems
     -- Guardian(TM) bare reticle storage systems
 
     Integration Services and Support
     -- Software system architecture, planning and design
     -- Software system implementation and integration services
     -- AMHS planning and design
     -- Installation and post installation services and support
 
     "We selected PRI Automation because of their unique ability to deliver a
 cost effective integrated solution for our demanding automated material
 handling, manufacturing control and information management needs," commented
 Ron Niv, manager of Fab 2 operations at Tower.
     "This order is significant because it represents a complete solution
 consisting of hardware, software, and services," said Mitch Tyson, PRI's
 president and CEO. "PRI is unique in being able to integrate all of these
 critical components into a solution that improves the productivity of
 semiconductor manufacturing operations in today's high volume production fab."
     Foundry semiconductor manufacturers are faced with difficult manufacturing
 challenges because there are a greater variety of products with higher numbers
 of hot lots in production at any given time, compared with traditional
 integrated device manufacturers (IDMs).  PRI has extensive experience working
 with the world's largest semiconductor foundries and understands these
 challenges.  The scope of the Tower Semiconductor project gives PRI the
 opportunity to apply all of its domain expertise in factory automation and
 factory management software systems to help Tower implement an efficient and
 productive manufacturing operation.
     PRI is responsible for implementing an integrated factory automation
 environment that will automate the entire manufacturing process.  The solution
 consists of wafer and reticle transportation and storage, factory management
 software, including material control software (MCS) to manage and direct the
 wafer and reticle material handling systems, manufacturing execution system
 (MES) software to direct and control the manufacturing operation, collect in-
 line data for process control and yield enhancement, and equipment interface
 software for process tool communication and station control.
     PRI will be designing the software systems architecture and providing the
 software integration and support services required for installing and
 implementing the PRI supplied software and hardware components into Tower's
 manufacturing environment. This effort will be enhanced by PRI's significant
 integration experience working on hundreds of CIM implementation projects
 around the world.
 
     About Tower Semiconductor
     Tower Semiconductor Ltd. is an independent wafer manufacturer,
 strategically focused on advanced Flash memory and CMOS Image Sensor
 technologies. Tower provides manufacturing and turnkey services for integrated
 circuits (IC) on silicon wafers in geometries from 1.0 to 0.35 micron, using
 its advanced technological capabilities and the proprietary designs of its
 customers.
     Tower recently began construction of an advanced fab adjacent to its
 current facility in Migdal Haemek, Israel. The new fab, referred to as "Fab
 2," will employ approximately 1,000 employees and produce up to 33,000 200-mm
 wafers per month in geometries of 0.18 micron and below, using advanced CMOS
 technology from Toshiba. For additional information please visit
 www.TowerSemi.com.
 
     About PRI Automation
     PRI Automation, Inc., headquartered in Billerica, Massachusetts, is the
 leading global supplier of advanced factory automation systems, software, and
 service to semiconductor manufacturers and OEM equipment suppliers.  PRI is
 the only company to provide a tightly integrated and flexible hardware and
 software solution that optimizes the flow of materials and information
 throughout the fab improving the productivity of semiconductor manufacturing.
 The company has thousands of systems installed at hundreds of locations
 throughout the world.  For more information visit PRI online at www.pria.com.
 
     Safe Harbor Statement
     This release includes forward-looking statements, including, without
 limitation, statements relating to the expected benefits of PRI Automation
 products. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and
 uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those
 expressed or implied by such statements.  Such risks and uncertainties
 include; (i) the manner in which the customer uses the products and integrates
 them with other third party components; (ii) the ability of the company to
 continue to successfully develop and market new products and product
 enhancements on a timely basis; (iii) completing the construction of Tower's
 new wafer manufacturing facility, (iv) conditions in the market for foundry
 manufacturing services and in the market for semiconductor products generally,
 (v) successful completion of the development and/or transfer of advanced CMOS
 process technologies to be utilized in Tower's new Fab, (vi) market acceptance
 and competitiveness of the products to be manufactured by Tower using these
 technologies; (vii) ramp-up at Tower's new fabrication facility. (viii) the
 cyclicality of the semiconductor industry and the rapid technological change
 that characterizes the industry in which the Company competes; (ix)
 uncertainties affecting global markets and currencies, the effects of possible
 delays by semiconductor manufacturers in the adoption of 300 mm wafer
 manufacturing and other new technologies, (x) changes in our product sales
 mix; (xi) competitive factors, such as introduction of new products or
 technologies by our competitors, and pricing pressures; (xii) the possible
 impact of any mergers and acquisitions activity by the Company and its ability
 to successfully integrate and operate any acquired businesses; (xiii) business
 and economic conditions affecting the semiconductor manufacturing equipment
 industry generally; (xiv) and other factors identified in our registration
 statement on Form S-3, file number 333-34584, as filed with the Securities and
 Exchange Commission on April 12, 2000 and amended thereafter.  We assume no
 obligation to update any forward-looking information contained in this
 release.
 
      Media Contact:
      Dave Anderson
      Stauch Vetromile & Mitchell
      401-438-0614
      dave@svmmarcom.com
 
      PRI Contact:
      Jeffrey Nestel-Patt
      PRI Automation
      978-670-4270
      jnestel-patt@pria.com
 
      Tower Contact:
      Udi Efrat
      Tower
      +972-4-650-6203
      udief@TowerSemi.com
 
                      MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X18716715
 
 SOURCE  PRI Automation, Inc.