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Acquisitions bloom all around

Posted: 08 Sep 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Intel? acquisitions? chipmakers?

About ten years ago Intel went on a buying spree, acquiring companies for billions of dollars then writing them off or selling them for much less a few years later.

Will Strauss, founder and president of market watcher Forward Concepts enumerates some of these acquisitions in a report.

Intel paid about $1.7 billion for its first big communications acquisition, Level One Communications, which no longer exists today. It bought DSP Communications for about $1.6 billion, which it later sold to Marvell for $600 million, writing off another $600. VxTel cost Intel $550 million and was sold for under $1 million.

He notes though, that all those acquisitions were made by executive managers who were technologists. Paul Otelini, the current president and CEO, on the other hand, has degrees in economics and business management. He emphasizes that there is now a different mindset at Intel now.

This time around Intel is pushing back into the cellular chip business with the purchase of Infineon's wireless business and ComSys Mobile; into wireline communications with the purchase of TI's cable modem business; and even into security software with the purchase of McAfee Inc. for $7.7 billion, Strauss notes.

Strauss also notices that Intel is not alone in acquisition mode, that other big chipmakers are making acquisitions. He notes that On Semiconductor, Marvell Technology, Micron, Microchip Technology, Synopsys and others have made acquisitions to strengthen their product offerings or to expand into new markets.

He says that the trend is not showing signs of slowing down yet.

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