Synopsys Inc, the chip design software house from Mountain View, California, is to make its second acquisition this year, buying its competitor, and sometimes partner Viewlogic Systems Inc for stock worth some $500m, based on current prices. The company claims the transaction is the largest ever merger in the history of electronic design automation. Synopsys will issue .6521 of a share of common stock for each outstanding share of Marlboro, Massachusetts-based Viewlogic. Synopsys, growing fast on the back of increasingly complex system on a chip designs, will gain the use of Viewlogic’s tools for designing and simulating application specific integrated circuits. Synopsys has traditionally concentrated on the logic synthesis market, and by some estimates has around 80% of that market. Viewlogic products, people and facilities will be merged into Synopsys, with simulation products consolidated into a new Simulatition Systems Group, and timing and test products will be grouped together. Viewlogic’s printed circuit board business, however, will become a wholly-owned subsidiary, and remain located in Marlboro, run by Viewlogic’s current president and chief executive officer, Will Herman. It will retain the Viewlogic Systems name. Synopsys expects a one-time charge related to the acquisition in the quarter it closes. In January, Synopsys acquired Epic Design Technology Inc (CI No 3,080). Viewlogic posted profits of $63m on revenues of $465m last year, while Viewlogic made $9.55m profit on revenues of $141m.
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