Demand for Powerful Technology Drives Electronics Suppliers Together

Renesas and Intersil logos

Renesas and Intersil logosSensing that the whole will be greater than the sum of its parts in a rapidly growing market for smart products, Renesas Electronics Corporation, a premier supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, and Intersil Corporation, a leading provider of innovative power management and precision analog solutions, announced they have signed a definitive agreement for Renesas to acquire Intersil for $3.2 billion. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2017 pending stockholder and governmental approvals.

The acquisition combines two long-standing industry leaders in their respective segments and is consistent with a recent pattern of similar transactions among the companies’ peers. The need for Renesas and Intersil to bulk up by combining resources is caused by the extremely prominent role that semiconductor-based technology is taking in products large and small.

For example, goods ranging from light bulbs to automobiles are increasingly differentiating themselves based not on their core functions (i.e., lighting a room or transporting a passenger from Point A to Point B), but rather on cutting-edge value-added technology such as sensor-packed light bulbs, autonomous driving, and other “smart” features.Graphic of Renesas R-Car D1 Series of automotive SoCs specialized for 3D graphics clustersOne of many systems experiencing evolving complexity is vehicle instrument clusters. No longer content with basic analog dials, customers demand (and vehicle possess) huge amounts of information. One solution is the 3-dimensional graphical instrument cluster, behind many of which sits a Renesas semiconductor. These systems must be customizable by individual auto manufacturers while also possessing attributes including rapid startup, driver safety protection, resistance to hacking, and interoperability with a wide variety of communications interfaces. Meeting these and other strict requirements requires the supplier to be bigger than ever.

Graphic of Intersil integrated circuitIntersil, whose roots date to 1967, has developed market leadership in power management and precision analog technology for many of the most rigorous applications in the computing, consumer and industrial markets. One of the company’s many systems is an automotive battery management solution specifically designed to meet stringent safety, reliability, and performance requirements of next generation hybrid electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and battery electric vehicles. Intersil also owns other technology, including heads-up displays and infotainment systems for vehicles, that is complementary to Renesas.

By combining Renesas’s market-proven microcontroller (MCU) and system-on-chip (SoC) products and technologies with Intersil’s leading power management and precision analog capability, Renesas will be well positioned to address some of the most exciting opportunities in key areas such as automotive, industrial, cloud computing, healthcare, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

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