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Cadence Design Systems Inc has cranked up its design services resources once again, with the acquisition of UK company Symbionics Ltd. Privately-held Symbionics, based in Cambridge, provides product development services to consumer device and telecommunications companies such as Ericsson AB, Matsushita/Panasonic, Sony Corp, Samsung Electronics Co and Hewlett-Packard Co in areas such as wireless communications, multimedia and digital TV design. Cadence, historically a tools company, has been moving into the design services business over the last few years, a process which began in earnest when it took on 150 hardware and software designers from Unisys Corp back in 1995 (CI No 2,617). Since then, Cadence has expanded its design services operation to 1,400 people around the world, around 40% of its total staff. The Symbionics acquisition, for which terms have not been disclosed, is the largest single influx of design engineers since that 1995 deal, Cadence said, and adds 120 more engineers to the payroll. Symbionics, which has annual revenues of around 20m pounds, will stay in Cambridge under the management of current chief executive Brent Hudson. There are six other Cadence design centers in Europe, including the recently announced system-on-chip design plant in Livingston, Scotland (CI No 3,309).

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