Broadcom to buy Agere

Our friends at Light Reading are reporting that Broadcom, the chip-upstart is looking to buy Agere Systems. Those who don’t know the back history, Agere is the chip business of Lucent which was spun out after the communications business hit an airpocket. Now the rumors are flying thick-and-fast that Broadcom is ready to swoop in and buy the former high-flyer whose stock has fallen to an abysmal $1.26 a share. And just to think, that there was a time when Agere traded for over $75 a share. Light Reading says that “Agere participates in a few markets that Broadcom doesn’t, most notably chips for hard disk drives. And Agere could push Broadcom further into the telecom space with physical-layer chips, network processors, and switch fabrics. But Agere also overlaps Broadcom in two areas where Broadcom doesn’t need much help: cell phone chips and wireless LANs.” One thing going for Agere is its expertise in 3G chips business, and that clearly is an area Broadcom needs to get into.