AMD sells mobile tech to Qualcomm

Qualcomm is acquiring some of AMD's mobile graphics and multimedia technology, along with specialist AMD employees, in a £47m deal

AMD has sold some of its handheld-graphics and multimedia technology to Qualcomm.

The deal, signed on Monday and announced on Tuesday, is worth $65m (£47m). Some AMD employees will be transferring to Qualcomm as part of the agreement, but the number of staff affected by the sale has not been disclosed. Qualcomm was previously paying licence fees to AMD for some of the technology it has now bought.

Regulatory approval for the deal has already been obtained, the companies said in a statement.

"This acquisition of assets from AMD's handheld business brings us strong multimedia technologies, including graphics cores that we have been licensing for several years," said Qualcomm's executive vice president Steve Mollenkopf in the statement.

Robert J Rivet, AMD's chief operations officer, said the deal would allow AMD to "focus on core business and leverage [its] unique position as a leader in both x86 computing and high-end graphics".

"We believe the talented AMD Handheld employees will be a great asset to Qualcomm," he added.

According to the statement, the AMD employees who have received offers of employment from Qualcomm come from "various design and development teams from AMD's handheld business", and have been working on various aspects of mobile devices such as graphics, audio and video, display and architecture.

ZDNet UK has contacted both AMD and Qualcomm to find out how many employees are being transferred, but had not received a reply at the time of writing.

In the past six months AMD has sold or split off many of its business units. In August, the company sold its digital TV unit to Broadcom, and in October it split off its manufacturing business to form a chipmaking joint venture with an Abu Dhabi investment company. AMD is also in the process of making thousands of workers redundant and reducing salaries as part of a cost-cutting drive.

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