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Atheros acquires LBS chipmaker u-Nav
|19 декабря 2007|
The acquisition of u-Nav immediately expands Atheros’ growing product portfolio in mobile wireless communications which also includes mobile wireless LAN (WLAN), Bluetooth and PHS.
Atheros Communications had signed a definitive agreement to acquire the assets and certain liabilities of u-Nav Microelectronics, a privately held fabless semiconductor company specializing in GPS chipsets and software that enable mobile location-based products and services.
u-Nav’s technology enables mobile device manufacturers to quickly and easily develop embedded GPS applications for the wireless handset, personal navigation device, personal computing, consumer and mobile telemetry markets. u-Nav’s flagship product, the uN3010, is a single-chip GPS receiver that integrates the company’s CMOS high-performance RFIC core with its third-generation baseband IC core.
The addition of u-Nav’s shipping GPS products and technologies to Atheros’ Radio-on-Chip for Mobile (ROCm) portfolio enables the company to deliver high-performance, cost-efficient combinations of mobile solutions featuring the industry’s leading WLAN, Bluetooth and GPS technologies. By aggregating these complimentary wireless technologies into complete, single-source solutions, Atheros will deliver greater value to its existing base of world-class customers, expand into new market segments and offer a greater share of the total bill of materials for mobile devices. Additionally, Atheros will provide optimized wireless coexistence, supporting multiple radios in a single device for local area networking, personal area networking and mobile location-based services.
“Like Atheros, u-Nav leads the industry with highly integrated, leading-performance solutions and was among the first companies to deliver single-chip CMOS GPS,” said Craig BARRATT, president and chief executive officer of Atheros. “Their engineering team possesses significant RF design expertise on CMOS technology, which complements Atheros’ design capability and culture. With u-Nav’s GPS competency we will deliver an impressive set of wireless solutions that include Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS, increasing the value we bring to our customers.”
The research firm, In-Stat, forecasts the number of GPS-enabled mobile devices to grow from 180 million units in 2007 to 720 million units in 2011. This compound annual growth rate of more than 75 percent is driven by the increasing popularity among consumers of GPS services in wireless handsets and personal navigation devices, and the expansion of the capability into a wide array of consumer devices such as laptops, mobile gaming products and digital cameras.
“We are enthusiastic about joining Atheros. With its exemplary reputation for engineering best-in-class communications solutions, Atheros provides us with a great development environment and the opportunity to significantly expand the adoption of our GPS solutions,” said Greg WINNER, formerly chief executive officer of u-Nav, now General Manager of Atheros’ GPS business unit?. “Atheros’ strong PC, networking and consumer products customer base provides an extensive channel in which to leverage u-Nav’s GPS capabilities and to achieve synergies for delivering Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS from a single, trusted vendor.”
With the acquisition of u-Nav, Atheros gains 54 employees located at u-Nav’s Irvine, Calif., headquarters and its European engineering facility in Tampere, Finland. Upon closing the transaction, Atheros will also take assignment of the patent cross-license agreement already in place between u-Nav and SiRF Technology, Inc.
The cash and stock transaction, currently valued at approximately $54 million, includes $15.4 million in cash and 1.28 million shares of Atheros common stock and may include an additional consideration to shareholders if certain defined milestones are achieved. A portion of the consideration will be held in escrow for up to 12 months.