LONDON Ė MIPS Technologies Inc., a licensor of processor intellectual property that has been reportedly up for sale, has provided long-time customer Broadcom with a multi-faceted, multi-year patent and technology license in return for $26.5 million.
Broadcom (Irvine, Calif.), a leading fabless communications chip company, has been a MIPS licensee since 1998 and was one of the companies that it was thought could make an offer for MIPS (Sunnyvale, Calif.). However, it appears that Broadcom has instead sought to protect itself with an all-encompassing license, one-time deal.
For a payment of $26.5 million Broadcom has obtained non-exclusive worldwide license to patents owned or licensable by MIPS for use with its Broadcom products. In addition it has been granted a multi-year extension of its current MIPS architecture and core licenses that lasts until the last-to-expire of those patents has expired.
"This agreement demonstrates the strength and value of our patent portfolio. In addition, we are pleased that Broadcom, MIPS' largest customer, has extended its license of MIPS' architectures and cores," said Sandeep Vij, CEO of MIPS, in a statement.
MIPS success, and even future existence, may depend on the reception given to the company's lastest product announcement; three families of Aptiv processor cores addressing the low, mid and high ends of the licensible processor core market. The three families are prefixed micro-, inter- and pro- respectively, with initials spelling out MIP and suggesting a Super family yet to come.
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