According to earlier Japanese media reports, Applied Materials, the world's largest chip manufacturing equipment supplier, plans to acquire Kokusai Electric for less than US$2.3 billion.

Today, Applied Materials officially announced that it will acquire International Electric from the international investment company KKR & Co. L.P. (KKR) for $2.2 billion in cash.

Kokusai Electric is a leading provider of efficient batch processing systems and services for memory, foundry and logic customers, complementing Applied Materials' leadership in single-wafer processing systems.

The transaction has been approved by the Board of Directors of Applied Materials. The transaction is expected to be completed in approximately 12 months and requires regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions. Upon completion of the transaction, Kokusai Electric will operate as a business subsidiary of the Applied Materials Semiconductor Products Group, which will continue to be based in Tokyo.