Broadcom to buy NewPort

Tuesday, August 15th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

IRVINE, Calif. – Broadcom Corp., the biggest maker of semiconductors for cable modems, said Monday it had agreed to buy closely held NewPort Communications Inc., a designer of chips that send information on fiber-optic networks, for $1.24 billion.

Broadcom will issue 5.5 million Class A shares for NewPort, its eighth acquisition this year. Broadcom shares rose $15.69 to $240.75 in Nasdaq trading. The shares have more than quadrupled in the last year.

NewPort gives Broadcom a foothold in the fast-growing market for chips used with lasers in fiber-optic equipment. NewPort, which competes with Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. and Applied Micro Circuits Corp., has developed semiconductors that occupy less space and consume less power by packing more functions on a single chip, Broadcom said.

Broadcom, which doubled its sales in the second quarter to $245.2 million, said the purchase will cut earnings per share by about 1 cent a quarter for the next three quarters. It expects to complete the acquisition in about 60 days.

Until now, Broadcom has focused on making chips for devices that speed up Internet access, such as cable modems and digital set-top boxes. It also leads the market for some chips used in corporate-network switches and computer-connector cards.

With the acquisitions of NewPort and Silicon Spice Inc., unveiled a week ago, Broadcom is adding products that run telecommunications networks.