Broadcom buying smart-card security specialist SC Square

Broadcom will pay $41.9 million for the Israeli security software company

Chip maker Broadcom said Sunday that it will pay US$41.9 million for SC Square, a move that will bring expertise in smart-card security to the Irvine, California, architect of silicon for communications equipment.

Broadcom's cash purchase of the Israeli security software firm, which is subject to unspecified closing conditions, is expected to close by June 30, Broadcom said.

SC Square's website says the Tel Aviv company's security work is focused on smart cards used in e-health, ID cards, passports, banking and credit cards. Its products include the Apollo smart card OS.

Broadcom's revenue for 2010 was $6.82 billion, up 52 percent from the previous year -- a result that also propelled it into Gartner's list of the top-ten chip companies for 2010. The fabless semiconductor company reported net income of $1.08 billion for the year. It said today that it expects the acquisition to be dilutive to earnings for the remainder of 2011 by approximately $0.01.

The buy joins a string of recent cash acquisitions by Broadcom. Last month, it completed its $313 million purchase of Provigent, which provides chips for microwave backhaul systems. In the last quarter of 2010, it picked up a trio of SOC (system-on-a-chip) developers, paying $75 million Gigle Networks, which focuses on home networking over power lines; $316 million for Beceem Communications, which develops SOC solutions for LTE and WiMAX; and $86 million for Percello, which works on SOCs for femtocells.

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