Mixed-signal chip companies AMS (Unterpremstaetten, Austria) and Dialog Semiconductor plc (Reading, England) have confirmed they are in talks exploring the possibility of a merger.
Although it is believed the talks have been going on for several months the companies said in a statement: "These discussions are at a very preliminary stage and there can be no certainty that a transaction will be forthcoming."
Fabless chip company Dialog, led by respected CEO Jalal Bagherli, has enjoyed seven years of growth providing power management and other ICs peripheral to the main application processor in mobile devices. AMS, formerly known as Austriamicrosystems manufactures power, optical and magnetic and RF circuits at a 200mm wafer fab near Graz, Austria. The company took over TAOS Inc. in 2011.
The combined annual sales of the two companies in 2013 was about $1.4 billion and the combination would have a market capitalization of about $4.5 billion. It would also provide Europe with a company of global scale well placed to benefit from developments in the Internet of Things and wireless sensor networks.
Under stock market rules AMS has until July 24, 2014, to either announce its intention to make an offer for Dialog Semiconductor or announce that it does not intend to make an offer.
Although this suggests that AMS would be acquiring Dialog the deal is being referred to as a merger of equals. In fact Dialog, at $910 million, had nearly twice the sales of AMS in 2013.
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