STMicroelectronics Acquires France-Headquartered SOMOS Semiconductor

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Somos Semiconductor is a fabless semiconductor company. It was founded in 2018. STMicroelectronics has acquired two fabless semiconductor companies in last four months

STMicroelectronics has announced the acquisition and integration of the assets of SOMOS Semiconductor (SOMOS). SOMOS, based in Marly-le-Roy (France), is a fabless semiconductor company founded in 2018, and specialized in silicon-based power amplifiers and in RF Front-End Modules (FEM) products. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“Consumers and Industry expect more and better connectivity solutions. At ST we are committed to offering and enabling solutions to address these needs and challenges. Cellular IoT and 5G infrastructure technologies are key in that perspective. With this acquisition, we reinforce our ambition to play a major role in RF FEM for a buoyant connectivity IoT market and we strengthen our roadmap of RF Front-End for the 5G markets,” said Claude Dardanne, president, Microcontrollers and Digital ICs Group, at STMicroelectronics.

Dardanne added, “With the recent acquisition of BeSpoon for UWB technology and Riot Micro for NB-IoT modems, ST now offers its customers complete connectivity solutions leveraging the market-leading STM32 solutions and ecosystem.”

An article published on a Europe-based news website noted that Somos has collapsed just before the launch of ts NB-IoT / CAT-M1 wireless module. It is to be noted here that Somos was founded in 2018. It’s investors included Bpifrance, Omnes Capital and Xange.

Third acquisition within four months

The acquisition of Somos Semiconductor is the third by STMicroelectronics within four months span. The company, in July 2020, has acquired the entire share capital of Ultra Wide Band specialist BeSpoon and of the cellular IoT connectivity assets of Riot Micro. The acquistion also marks second of a fabless semiconductor company by STMicrolectronics witin four months.

BeSpoon, based in Le Bourget du Lac, France, is a fabless semiconductor company founded in 2010 and specialized in Ultra Wide Band (UWB) communications technology, whereas Riot Micro, based in Vancouver, Canada, designs cellular IoT solutions by applying proven design techniques from Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and Wi-Fi to LTE Cat-M and NB-IoT to optimize system cost and power.

STMicrolectronics, in May 2020, had also announced that it was acquiring majority stake in French Gallium Nitride (GaN) innovator Exagan. The signed agreement between the two also provides for the acquisition by ST of the remaining minority stake in Exagan 24 months after the closing of the acquisition of the majority stake.

“With this acquisition (Somos), ST reinforces its specialist staff, IP and roadmaps of Front-End Modules for the IoT and 5G markets. A first product – an NB-IoT / CAT-M1 module – is already undergoing qualification and will be the inception of a new roadmap of connectivity RF FEM products. SOMOS technology and assets will also support the development of ST’s existing roadmap of RF Front-End Modules for the 5G infrastructure market,” read STMicroelectronics’ official statement.

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