SAN JOSE, Calif. Ė RDA Microelectronics Inc. (Shanghai, China), a fabless chip company that markets RF and mixed-signal chips for cellular and broadcast communications applications, has announced the acquisition of all the baseband intellectual property from privately-held Chinese company Coolsand Holding Co. Ltd. for $46 million.
As part of the deal RDA expects to hire about 45 Coolsand employees most of whom are engineers.
Coolsand Holding Co. Ltd. was formed in 2002 and has been shipping IP cores for baseband communications since 2006, RDA said. Technologies it has developed include ICs, cores and software for GSM, GPRS, EDGE together with its own RISC CPU and DSP implementations, RTOS and PHY chips and drivers.
NASDAQ-listed RDA paid approximately $20 million in cash and 15 million RDA ordinary shares valued at about $26 million.
RDA said the move would allow the company to offer an expanded and comprehensive portfolio of technology for the China handset manufacturers.
Vincent Tai, chairman and CEO of RDA Microelectronics, said that the addition of baseband to RDA's RF and mixed-signal offerings opens the way for the company to make market-share gains.
"Our collaboration with Coolsand over the past two years has yielded valuable knowledge in development, sales, marketing and support for baseband products," said Tai. He added: "Our co-developed baseband product is the most integrated 2G baseband available in its category with superior hardware integration and best-in-class architecture."
Tai said that development work is beginning on WCDMA and TD-SCDMA products. "I believe this is the right time to enter this market based on RDA's market position and solid customer relationships. We have proven technological advantages that we believe will enable us to capitalize on the tremendous opportunities in the baseband market and drive our future growth," Tai said.
In a presentation for analysts RDA said that the market for TD-SCDMA and WCDMA phones in China was estimated to be 64 million units in 2011 but would grow to 218 million units in 2015. RDA Microelectronics intends to ramp rapidly targeting features phones in 2012 and moving on to 3G/smartphones in 2013, according to the presentation.
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