LONDON – Ceva, a DSP IP licensor, has offered $75 million in cash for processor IP licensor MIPS Technologies in an attempt to outbid GPU licensing company Imagination Technologies.
MIPS (Sunnyvale, Calif.) announced on Nov. 5 that Imagination would acquire outstanding MIPS shares for $60 million in cash following the completion of the proposed patent sale transaction with Bridge Crossing.
The competing bid by Ceva (Mountain View, Calif.) is reportedly structured along the same lines as Imagination's (Kings Langley, England). That bid calls for a large proportion of the MIPS patent portfolio to be sold to Bridge Crossing for about $350 million. Ceva has valued the remainder of MIPS at a 25 percent higher value than Imagination did in its bid. The Ceva proposal is still subject to the approval of its board of directors and due diligence, MIPS said.
Ceva has emerged as one of the beneficiaries of the changing mobile handset IC market. With more than $150 million cash on hand earlier this year, the company was talking about expanding its customer base and diversifying its revenue sources.
MIPS said its board is evaluating Ceva's proposal before deciding which offer to accept. It said it is now in discussions with Ceva.
Ceva's DSP cores complement MIPS' architecture processors, but in ways that differ from Imagination's graphics cores that are used alongside MIPS processors. For example, Ceva and MIPS cores are often used together in home entertainment systems, although Ceva has also been successful in mobile communications applications where MIPS cores are rarely found.
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