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Xilinx acquires floor planner startup

Posted: 10 Jun 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:fpga? chipscope pro debugging? edk embedded tool? system generator dsp? optional tools?

Xilinx Inc. has acquired privately held FPGA floor planning vendor Hier Design Inc. for an undisclosed amount.

The acquisition give Xilinx 13 new employees and the PlanAhead floor planning software that, according Lee Hansen, product marketing manager of software product marketing at Xilinx, allows users of Xilinx' newly announced Virtex-4 FPGAs to optimize the floor plans of the new devices.

"The fit is ideal," said Hansen. "With the increase in design size and complexity in new FPGA families there is great demand for Hier's technology."

Xilinx also gains Hier's touted FPGA floor planner and a new optional timing engine.

Salil Raje, Hier's CTO, said the acquisition will give it a large sales channel and a way to deliver Hier's technology to designers.

The companies said the PlanAhead technology had already been integrated into the Xilinx environment, and Raje said the company's PlanAhead tool only supported Xilinx architectures.

PlanAhead, which Hier licensed for $40,000, will be sold to Xilinx as an optional product for Xilinx' ISE suite. Steve Lass, director of software product marketing, at Xilinx said the company will likely license PlanAhead for considerably less than the Hier price.

"There are certain tool you need to do your job, and there are ones you would like to have," said Lass. "We include the tools designers need in ISE and tools users would like to have as options."

Xilinx also offers ChipScope Pro debugging, EDK embedded tool and System Generator DSP as optional tools to ISE. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but Xilinx said the acquisition price is not considered material, or less than 1 percent of Xilinx' annual revenues. Cadence Design Systems Inc. as well as Xilinx were initial investors in Hier.

- Mike Santarini

EE Times

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