Advised GloNav, a fabless semiconductor GPS solutions company, on its acquisition by NXP Semiconductors
Dec 2007
acquired by
$110 million
  • Sector: Systems & Deep Tech
  • Deal Type: Strategic Deals; Venture Capital Exits
  • Engagement type: Sellside
  • Size: $110 million

We are pleased to announce that Arma Partners has acted as exclusive financial advisor to GloNav Inc., a leading US-based fabless semiconductor company developing single-chip solutions for Global Positioning Systems (GPS), on its acquisition by NXP Semiconductors, announced on December 21, 2007. The total deal value of $110 million consists of $85 million in cash at closing plus up to $25 million in cash contingent upon GloNav reaching certain revenue and product development milestones over the next two years. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2008, subject to regulatory approvals.

GloNav is a fabless semiconductor company developing GPS and other satellite navigation technologies and products. The company is headquartered in Newport Beach, California, with offices in Dublin, Ireland, Daventry, United Kingdom and Taipei, Taiwan. GloNav has the longest heritage of GPS technology in the semiconductor industry and leverages this into the highest-sensitivity, lowest-power and fastest time-to-first-fix (TTFF) semiconductor solutions available for the wireless handset and mobile consumer electronics device markets. GloNav was established by Atlantic Bridge Ventures (AbVen) in 2006 through the spin-out of CEVA Inc.’s (NASDAQ: CEVA) GPS business and merger with RFDomus Inc. The transaction will deliver an exceptional return to GloNav’s shareholders, which include AbVen, CEVA and GloNav management and employees.

NXP is a top 10 semiconductor company founded by Philips 50 years ago and spun off as a separate business in 2006. Headquartered in Europe, the company has 37,000 employees working in more than 20 countries and posted sales of €5 billion in 2006.

This transaction is Arma Partners’ second deal in the wireless semiconductor space in 2007 following on from advising NordNav Technologies AB on its acquisition by CSR plc for $75m.

– GloNav is a leading fabless semiconductor company developing GPS and other satellite navigation technologies and products

– Solutions enable high quality location functionality to be built into mobile phones and portable devices, including PDAs, digital cameras and music players

– GloNav was spun out of Ceva (NASD:CEVA)

– GloNav was backed by Atlantic Bridge Ventures

– NXP Semiconductors is a top 10 semiconductor company

– NXP was founded by Philips Electronics 50 years ago and spun off as a separate business in 2006. NXP is owned by a private equity consortium including KKR, Bain Capital, Apax, Silver Lake and AlpInvest

– NXP has a diverse revenue base with heavy focus on the consumer and wireless areas

– NXP believes GPS has the opportunity to reach the penetration levels of FM Radio and Bluetooth in wireless handsets and as part of its strategy to focus on wireless connectivity it has brought the technology in-house

– NXP will initially sell GloNav’s solution on a standalone basis at the 90nm node but over time will migrate the solution into a combined “connectivity chip” at the 45nm node

– Long term the potential exists to integrate the GloNav GPS technology into the wireless baseband

– GloNav’s strong IP position fits into NXP’s heritage as an IP focused company

– NXP’s large Tier 1 customer base significantly expands the potential market for GloNav

– Arma Partners has been active in the wireless handset market and maintains relationships with the majority of the key buyers

– After the CSR-NordNav deal a wave of consolidation began in the GPS IC market. GloNav was approached by an IDM and at this stage Arma was brought to explore whether an attractive valuation could be achieved despite GloNav only being at “product tape-out” stage

– Together with the management team and investors Arma designed an accelerated process involving the major integrators in the space

– Arma was able to successfully create a competitive process which led to a strategic valuation being paid for an early stage company