Why Renesas is Buying Software Company Altium for $5.9 Billion

By combining forces, Renesas and Altium are poised to deliver enhanced electronics design solutions and drive innovation in chip circuit board development.
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In a significant move to bolster its position in the global semiconductor industry, Renesas Electronics, a prominent Japanese semiconductor firm, has announced its acquisition of Altium, a Sydney-listed software company.

The acquisition, valued at 9.1 billion Australian dollars ($5.89 billion) in cash, marks Renesas’ strategic endeavor to streamline its electronics design process and enhance its capabilities in chip circuit board design.

This blog post delves into the details of the acquisition, its implications for Renesas and Altium, and its broader significance within the semiconductor landscape.

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Renesas Electronics’ Acquisition of Altium:

Renesas Electronics has agreed to acquire Altium for AU$68.50 per share, representing a significant premium of 33.6% to Altium’s closing price prior to the announcement.

This substantial investment underscores Renesas’ commitment to fortifying its presence in electronics design, particularly in the realm of chip circuit board development.

Altium’s core business revolves around providing software tools for electronics design, making it a strategic fit for Renesas’ objectives.

Strategic benefits:

Streamlined electronics design: Both companies aim to build a unified platform for electronics system design and lifecycle management. This would integrate Altium’s cloud-based design software with Renesas’ portfolio of embedded solutions, leading to a more seamless and efficient design process.

Faster innovation: Combining Altium’s software expertise with Renesas’ hardware knowledge can accelerate innovation, potentially bringing products to market faster.

Reduced entry barriers: The integrated platform could make electronics design more accessible to a broader range of users, lowering the barriers to entry.

Financial gains: Renesas expects the acquisition to be financially beneficial, both immediately and in the long term, through revenue and cost synergies. Altium brings a strong financial profile with recurring revenue and high margins.

Digitalization strategy: This acquisition strengthens Renesas’ digitalization strategy, positioning them well in the evolving electronics landscape.

Specific advantages from Altium:

Cloud platform: Altium’s expertise in cloud-based design tools aligns with the industry’s shift towards cloud-based solutions.

Software expertise: Integrating Altium’s software knowledge with Renesas’ hardware knowledge can create a more comprehensive offering.

Overall, the acquisition aims to:

  • Simplify complex electronics design processes.
  • Accelerate innovation in the electronics industry.
  • Make electronics design more accessible.
  • Strengthen Renesas’ financial position and digitalization strategy.

Read More: TSMC announces 2nd Fab in Japan

Significance within Japan’s Semiconductor Landscape:

The acquisition of Altium by Renesas reflects Japan’s concerted efforts to regain leadership and dominance in the semiconductor sector. Japanese firms have significant idle capital and favorable funding conditions. They are pursuing strategic acquisitions to enhance their technological capabilities and global competitiveness. Renesas’ acquisition of Altium highlights Japan Inc’s ambition to influence the future of chip-making.

Read More: How TSMC Triumphed in Japan and Found Hurdles in US in Global Expansion

Potential Impact on the Global Semiconductor Industry:

Renesas’ strategic acquisitions, such as Altium, bolster its influence in the global semiconductor industry. Integrating Altium’s software and expertise allows Renesas to offer comprehensive chip design solutions worldwide. This consolidation may lead Japan Inc to gain a larger share of the global chip-making market.

Read More: Japan to Offer $307 Million to Develop Optical Technology for Use in Chips


The Altium acquisition is a milestone in Japan’s semiconductor leadership journey. Renesas and Altium together aim to innovate chip circuit board development. Japan is committed to using its tech and finance to reshape the global semiconductor landscape.

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