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Renesas seeks to acquire U.S. chipmaker Intersil


Japan’s Renesas Electronics Corp is in the final stages of negotiations to acquire U.S. chipmaker Intersil Corp. for as much as USD$3 billion, an industry source familiar with the deal says.

An agreement on the deal, which would be the latest in a trend of consolidation among global chipmakers, was likely to come “soon”, said the person, who was not authorized to discuss the matter and thus asked not to be named. Renesas said in a statement it was considering various options to grow, including a deal with a U.S. chipmaker, but that nothing had been decided. Intersil could not be reached for comment outside business hours in the United States.

Impact of slowing growth in computers and smartphones

Slowing growth in computers and smartphones – the traditional mainstays of the industry – fueled a wave of mergers last year, with chipmakers turning to areas such as auto electronics for sales growth. Demand for cheaper chips and new products to power internet-connected gadgets has also driven consolidation in the industry.

Renesas was created in 2010 from a merger of NEC Corp’s chip division and Renesas Technology, which itself was established through a merger of the chip units of Hitachi Ltd. and Mitsubishi Electric Corp. At the end of last year, Tokyo-based Renesas was the world’s third-largest chipmaker by market share, with 9.1 percent, data from technology research firm Gartner showed.