On Monday, Intel Corp has agreed to acquire Israeli self-driving car technology company Mobileye for $15.3 billion in an deal that could shove the US chip maker into direct competition with its rivals like Nvidia Corp and Qualcomm Inc to manufacture self-driving system for global automakers.
An expensive acquisition of Mobileye can promote the world’s largest computer chips manufacturer to the forefront of the automotive component suppliers at a time when Intel s already reaching the market beyond its core semiconductor business computer.
It also promise to scale up the arms race among the automakers and suppliers around the world to acquire self-driving vehicle technology,and which could supply the already overheated assessments of self-driving new businesses.
The market shares are huge. Last year, Goldman Sachs predicted that the market for advanced driver assistance systems and self-driving car business will grow from $3 billion in 2015 to $96 billion by 2020 and $290 billion by 2035.
On Monday, Investment analysts expressed the concern about the possible synergies between Intel and Mobileye, as well as the purchase price.
Betsy Van Hees, an analyst at Loop Capital Market said “This is a great opportunity for them to get into the market, which has significant potential for the growth.” “Mobileye technology is very important and the price Intel is paying for this, seems fair,” she added.
However, In an newsletter Advisors for Intel said “The acquisition of Mobileye indicates a strategic move, as far for their franchise business”.
The deal amount is 21 time more than the expected revenue of 2017, which makes his deal more than six times more expensive than the three-year avg transaction of the semiconductor industry, said B. Riley analyst Craig Ellis. “The very expensive deal” improved the position of Intel in the market of self-driving cars, which left Nvidia leader at the highest level,” he added.
Paying the premium of 60 times of the Mobileye’s earning, and about four times the premium that Qualcomm company who is paying to acquire Netherlands’s NXP company.
The price of the money offer of $63.54 per share represent a 33% premium to the closing price of Mobileye at $47 per share on Friday, But below its closing price of $64.14 in August 2015.
Intel will give Mobileye unusual autonomy, integrating its own automated driving group with Mobileye’s operations under Mobileye Chairman Amnon Shashua, who will lead the unit from Israel.
Intel Chief Executive Brian Krzanich said the acquisition was akin to merging the “eyes of the autonomous car with the intelligent brain that actually drives the car.”
Mobileye supplies integrated cameras, chips and software for driver-assist systems – the building blocks for self-driving cars – to more than two dozen vehicle manufacturers.
Mobileye was an early supplier of vision systems to Tesla, but the two companies had an acrimonious and public break-up last summer after the driver of a Tesla Model S was killed while operating the vehicle using Tesla’s Autopilot system.