Broadcom acquires femto developer Percello

US silicon vendor Broadcom has revealed its second major acquisition of the month with the announcement that it has signed a deal to buy femtocell chip developer Percello Ltd for $86m. The deal comes two weeks after Broadcom acquired multimode 4G platform developer Beceem.

Broadcom said that the Percello acquisition should enable it to lower its bill of material cost and accelerate time to market for femtocell offerings.

“As wireless data usage continues to expand, this technology is well-positioned to enable wireless carriers to offload both data and voice traffic, while offering subscribers better cell reception in the home and office and accelerating the introduction of new converged mobile broadband services,” said Greg Fischer, vice president and general manager of Broadcom’s Broadband Carrier Access unit.

Industry analyst ABI Research estimates that more than one million femtocells have been shipped so far in 2010. By 2015, the firm said, it expects shipments to be running at 50 million annually, with WCDMA femtocells accounting for the majority of demand.

Earlier in October Broadcom announced the acquisition of Beceem Communications, which has developed a 4G platform supporting both LTE and WiMAX networks. Broadcom said it would pay approximately $316m for the firm, and that it would be integrating Beceem’s 4G technology with its own 3G/2G cellular solutions, wireless LAN, Bluetooth, GPS, Ethernet switching and other associated IP, to accelerate the availability of highly integrated, lower cost 4G wireless broadband devices.

Broadcom also posted its third quarter results this week, netting profits of $327m from revenues of $1.8bn.

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