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Infineon snaps up Ardent

Puts its towels down in California

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Chip giant Infineon Technologies is to buy California circuit company Ardent Technologies in a $42 million share deal.

The Munich-based semiconductor maker said today the acquisition of Ardent, which specialises in high-bandwidth integrated circuits for LAN switching systems, would give it a leg up in the communications chips sector. The company's aim is to expand into this area in order to reduce dependence on the temperamental DRAM chip market - which is cursed with cyclical shortages that boost prices.

"The acquisition of Ardent emphasises Infineon's goal to strengthen its communications expertise," said Dr. Ulrich Schumacher, Infineon Technologies president and CEO.

"This move follows our strategy to complement
our portfolio with the know how and intellectual property of highly specialized design companies in fast growing market segments."

Infineon also backed up its aims to penetrate the LAN switching market through Dataquest research from July, which claimed switches were the fastest growing bit of the LAN market. Woldwide port shipments of LAN switches are expected to rise at a rate of 24 per cent and top 181 million in 2003. ®

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