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Higher bid stalls $284M SMSC purchase



A planned acquisition by Hauppauge-based Standard Microsystems Inc. is on hold.

Last month SMSC said it planned to buy a rival California company for $284 million. The target company is Conexant Systems Inc. of Newport Beach, a maker of products for imaging, audio and embedded modem and video.

But now another suitor has one-upped SMSC, offering $311 million for Conexant. The new offer comes from Golden Gate Private Equity Inc., of San Francisco.

Bloomberg News quoted an analyst saying the SMSC deal for Conexant could be renewed (with a higher bid, of course).

"I wouldn't be surprised if SMSC tries to do a topping or matching offer," said Blayne Curtis, of Jefferies & Co. in Boston, who has a "hold" rating on Conexant shares and does not own any, Bloomberg reports. "I wasn't really expecting any higher offers."

SMSC in November bought another California company, Symwave Inc., a maker of USB 3.0 products capable of transferring data 10 times faster than the current USB 2.0 computer port technology.

And in June, SMSC purchased a Dutch wireless product design company, Wireless Audio IP B.V., which makes plug-and-play wireless products for home theater, headphones, LED TVs, PCs, gaming and automotive entertainment.

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