4/7/2004 - Cadence Design Systems, Inc. (NYSE: CDN) announced it plans to acquire Neolinear, Inc., a privately held company. Neolinear's rapid analog design technology is critical for the consumer and communications markets where semiconductors are increasingly differentiated by their analog content. The Neolinear team will bring additional strong A/MS and RF expertise into Cadence and play a key role in driving ongoing innovations for improving yield and speeding IP reuse in the Cadence® Virtuoso® custom design platform. Neolinear's NeoCircuit and NeoCell are already an extended part of the industry-leading Virtuoso platform through an OEM agreement between the two companies.
Analog circuitry is challenging to design (which causes design cycles to stretch) and analog content is extremely sensitive to process variations. These challenges can adversely impact chip yields. Neolinear's technology speeds SoC and A/MS design and improves quality by providing design exploration, design centering, and circuit and layout optimization early in the design cycle. This enables designers to optimize circuit specifications while taking into account manufacturing variations. The net result is higher-performance designs with improved yield in less time. Moreover, circuits created with Neolinear's unique design technologies become analog IP that designers can reuse and retarget to new processes, speeding time-to-market.
Neolinear's products are fully integrated with the Virtuoso design platform and are expected to benefit from Cadence's multi-mode simulation and extensive layout design capabilities. Dozens of leading semiconductor companies are adopting Neolinear's technologies as part of their Cadence Virtuoso platform improving time-to-market and design yield.
"We started deploying Neolinear's next generation technologies in our Virtuoso design flow in January 2002 due to pressing business requirements to improve analog/RF design automation and design reuse," said Toshiyasu Akiyama, department manager, Analog EDA Technology Development, LSI Product Technology Unit, Renesas Technology Corp. "NeoCell is part of the A/MS design flow at multiple Renesas locations and we are now introducing NeoCircuit to enable rapid analog prototyping. We believe the combination of Cadence and Neolinear dramatically extend Cadence's leadership and strength in the custom design market."
"Analog and mixed-signal designs using CMOS technologies present a number of unique challenges. Our highly integrated digital chips need high-speed interfaces, which require designers to solve high performance analog and RF issues," said Raymond Li, vice president, Central Engineering Group, ATI Technologies. "Neolinear's sophisticated tools help the rapid design of this complex circuitry and the migration of these designs from one process technology to another. Based on strong partnerships with Cadence and Neolinear, we have extensively deployed Neolinear's technologies in the Virtuoso platform to help us meet these challenges. The combination of Cadence and Neolinear will help us achieve our stringent time-to-market demands with new design technologies."
The Neolinear team will become part of the Cadence custom IC organization and continue to focus on new generation A/MS and RF design technologies. Ron Rohrer, Neolinear's chairman, will join Cadence to direct applied research and development for high performance design. Rohrer will lead R&D efforts to develop a next generation RF and mixed-signal design system that was initially funded by Neolinear and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Tom Beckley, Neolinear's president and CEO, will focus on design solutions for circuit designers.
"Neolinear is a pioneer in rapid analog design, with unparalleled expertise in analog, mixed-signal and RF design," said Lavi Lev, executive vice president and general manager of the Cadence Implementation Division. "Neolinear's design exploration, design centering and optimization capabilities will enable us to extend our strengths in the Virtuoso platform to deliver design for yield and IP reuse solutions for analog, mixed-signal and RF designers."
"This move leverages our existing strong relationship with Cadence and enables the proliferation of Neolinear's technology through the Cadence sales channel," said Tom Beckley, president and CEO of Neolinear. "Most importantly, Cadence and Neolinear share a common vision of the need to rapidly improve our customers' ability to address silicon accuracy and time-to-market challenges. This is a real win for customers and for the rapidly growing mixed-signal design market."
Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
Cadence is the largest supplier of electronic design technologies, methodology services, and design services. Cadence solutions are used to accelerate and manage the design of semiconductors, computer systems, networking and telecommunications equipment, consumer electronics, and a variety of other electronics based products. With approximately 4,800 employees and 2003 revenues of approximately $1.1 billion, Cadence has sales offices, design centers, and research facilities around the world. The company is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., and traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol CDN. More information about the company, its products and services is available at www.cadence.com.
Cadence and the Cadence logo are registered trademarks of Cadence Design Systems, Inc.
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