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SMSC buys another wireless audio chip vendor

June 15, 2010 // Dylan McGrath

SMSC buys another wireless audio chip vendor

Mixed-signal IC vendor SMSC Monday (June 14) said it acquired Wireless Audio IP BV, a Dutch fabless audio chip vendor, for $22 million in cash plus performance-based payments worth up to $3 million.

Customers of Wireless Audio IP, which is also known as STS, include many of the industry's leading consumer and PC brands, according to SMSC (Hauppauge, N.Y.).

In February, SMSC announced the acquisition of Kleer Semiconductor Corp., a maker of chips for wireless audio. Financial terms of that agreement were not disclosed.

SMSC said STS's low-latency digital audio baseband processor and integrated module solutions are complementary to the leer wireless audio products. Together, the STS and Kleer teams intend to collaborate on developing best-in-class baseband processor and audio networking solutions that allow end users to enjoy state-of-the-art entertainment in the home, in the car or on the go, SMSC said.

“We are excited about the expansion of SMSC’s wireless audio product portfolio with the acquisition of STS,” said Christine King, SMSC president and CEO, in a statement. "The growth potential in the wireless audio market is significant as this technology is no longer just a unique application for audio enthusiasts."

Founded in 2003, STS has claims its wireless platform has shipped in millions of units of customer product deployed in a wide array of consumer applications.STS is headquartered in Amsterdam, with offices in Singapore and China.

SMSC said it expects Kleer and STS to contribute approximately $15 million in revenue in SMSC's current fiscal year, fiscal 2011. The acquisitions are expected to be neutral to slightly accretive during fiscal 2011, the company said.

Under terms of the share purchase agreement, SMSC paid $22 million in cash. Additional cash payments of up to $3 million may occur upon achievement of certain performance goals. The acquisition closed June 14.

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