Lattice Semi to be sold to China-backed private equity
The acquirer is Canyon Bridge Capital Partners Inc. (Palo Alto, Calif.) which has received its initial funding from partners in China. Lattice said it will continue to operate out of Portland as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Canyon Bridge. The purchase price is equivalent to $8.30 per share which represents a 30 percent premium over Lattice’s share price at close on November 2, 2016.
The move will leave Xilinx, the inventor of the FPGA, and Achronix Semiconductor Corp. as the leading independent and dedicated FPGA vendors. In recent years a number of other FPGA vendors have been acquired. Altera was acquired by Intel, Actel was acquired by Microsemi and Quicklogic has de-emphasized its underlying FPGA technology in favor of an application-specific platform approach to the market.
Lattice has been consistently loss making over many quarters and has been undergoing a strategic review process. In the 2015 fiscal and calendar year the company made a net loss of $159.2 million on revenue of $406 million. In the first half of 2016 the company made a net loss of $33.5 million on revenue of $$195.7 million.
The deal with Canyon Bridge Capital Partners has been agreed unanimously by both boards of directors and is expected to close early in 2017.
Ray Bingham, chairman of the board at Cypress and co-founding partner at Canyon Bridge Capital Partners Inc.
The co-founding partners in Canyon Bridge are Ray Bingham, a former CFO and CEO of EDA company Cadence Design Systems Inc. who is now chairman of Cypress Semiconductor and Benjamin Chow. Prior to founding Canyon Bridge Chow was a managing director with China Reform Fund Management Ltd., a partner with Beijing Leading Capital, and a managing director with SIG China. David Wang, a former CEO of Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. (SMIC) is acting as a senior advisor to Canyon Bridge. Wang had previously served as chairman of Huahong NEC after spending 25 years with Applied Materials, where he held various executive management positions.
“We are excited to leverage Canyon Bridge’s resources and market connections as we enhance our focus on executing our long-term strategic plan of continued innovation. Importantly, we will operate as a standalone subsidiary after the acquisition and do not expect any changes in our operations or our unwavering commitment to continued innovation for our customers,” said Darin Billerbeck, CEO of Lattice, in a statement.
Ray Bingham, a former CFO and CEO of EDA company Cadence Design Systems Inc. and founding partner at Canyon Bridge, said: “Lattice’s low-power FPGA franchise, along with its video connectivity and wireless solutions, make it a compelling, strategic investment. We expect the company will continue to leverage its existing customer relationships with major OEMs globally, while further broadening the role of its technology solutions and accelerating its strategic plans.”
Lattice said that both companies are committed to engaging with regulators to facilitate a positive governmental review of the acquisition.
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