Rambus Inc. (Sunnyvale, Calif.) has signed a ten-year licensing deal with Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. that covers both memory and cryptography intellectual property and that is worth more than $322 million to Rambus over the next five years.
The deal follows on from a similar seven-year deal signed late in 2013 by Rambus with memory IC maker Micron Technology Inc. (Boise, Idaho) that is worth $280 million.
Rambus has been pursuing a cooperative approach to licensing since the appointment of CEO Ron Black in June 2012, and with $600 million of income guaranteed in a few weeks it is clearly paying off. Rambus has also signed deals with SK Hynix, STMicroelectronics, Freescale Semiconductor and LSI Corp. Broadcom and Nvidia, in recent weeks and months.
The agreement between Rambus and Samsung is described as comprehensive and extends an existing relationship between the companies and is set to last 10 years. Under the terms of the agreement Samsung will make royalty payments of $15 million per quarter for the first five years, with an initial payment of $22 million for the fourth quarter of 2013. Payments in the second five-year period are variable and subject to market-related factors. The agreement further provides Samsung access to Rambus’ security technologies in system devices such as smart phones, tablets, and set-top boxes. The agreement is set to terminate in 2023.
Rambus's technology covers memory, security and some optoelectronics and Black is driving the company to monetize its technology base but without being a non-practicing entity or patent troll. The company has more than 250 engineers engaged in research and invention including engineers working on metal-oxide resistive RAM (ReRAM) non-volatile memory.
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