DALLAS -- Texas Instruments Inc. here today announced an agreement to acquire privately held Alantro Communications of Santa Rosa, Calif., to expand its wireless broadband IC portfolio. TI said it has agreed to acquire the three-year-old fabless semiconductor company for stock valued at about $300 million.
The acquisition announcement comes on the heels of TI's move to purchase analog chip maker Burr-Brown Corp. for $7.6 billion in stock (see June 21 story).
"The acquisition of Alantro is one more step by TI to bring broadband into and throughout the home or office," said George Barber, vice president and manager of the company's broadband access group in Dallas. "Digital subscriber lines (DSL) and cable modem chip sets from TI will deliver billions of bits of bandwidth to the home. Alantro's technology will distribute that bandwidth throughout the home or office without the need for wires," he added.
TI said Alantro has signal processing expertise as well as application knowledge and design know-how in wireless networking capabilities. The company has developed wireless local area networking (LAN) technology conforming to the IEEE 802.11 specification. In addition to its Santa Rosa headquarters, Alantro has additional
sites in San Diego and Raleigh, N.C. It employs about 50 people.
Once the acquisition is completed, Ti plans to make Alantro part of its Broadband Access Group.
The acquisition is the second in the wireless networking segment by TI in the last 18 months. In January 1999, TI announced its acquisition of Butterfly VLSI Ltd., an Israeli company pursuing radio-frequency ICs for short-distance links over the 900-MHz and 2.4-GHz bands (see Jan. 20, 1999, story).
TI said both of the Alantro and Butterfly acquisition will play a key role in its chip offerings for wireless LANs. The Dallas company believes wireless will be the preferred networking method because of its flexibility and ease of installation.
Alantro's technology will leverage TI's strength in digital signal processing (DSP) technology, said Chris Heegard, chairman, CEO and founder of the startup.
Both companies said the acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of the third quarter.