Qualcomm Buying Rapid Bridge Assets, Two Local Companies Get DOE Grants, Daily Deals Fuel Growth at Analog Analytics, & More San Diego BizTech News

The wireless news out of San Diego seems to have picked up in recent weeks, with Qualcomm playing a central role in most of the developments. Our briefing is ready for you now.

—The world’s largest wireless chipmaker agreed to buy San Diego-based Rapid Bridge’s LiquidCell technology, used to accelerate chip design, but Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) did not disclose the price. The Rapid Bridge asset sale is expected to close by Sept. 25, the end of Qualcomm’s fiscal year. EE Times London Editor Peter Clarke said “LiquidCell is a library consisting of a metal-programmable sea-of-transistors that can be configured into millions of usable elements supporting more than 160 functions from the 750 standard cells. The metal programmability allows designers to iterate designs, produce derivatives and meet industry-standard specifications through respins that only involve a few metal layers.”

—The success of Qualcomm’s succession is the subject of a story in The New York Times today. The Times notes that co-founder Irwin Jacobs passed the mantle of CEO to his son Paul six years ago, and that last year Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) accounted for 41 percent of the total market share in terms of smartphone chip revenue, according to one analyst’s estimates. Qualcomm also holds nearly 61 percent of the market share for application processors used in smartphones powered by Google’s Android operating system.

—The Department of Energy awarded funding to two San Diego companies, Genomatica and General Atomics, that is intended to advance technologies for bio-based fuels and chemicals that can be easily “dropped into” existing oil refinery and petrochemical production facilities. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said Friday that Genomatica would get as much as $5 million to enhance the commercial profitability of integrated bio-refineries used to produce 1,4-butanediol (BDO), an intermediate chemical. Genomatica has genetically engineered bacteria to make BDO. Chu said General Atomics would get up to $2 million to reduce the cost of fermentation processes needed to make algae-based biofuels.

Analog Analytics, a San Diego-based white label provider of social coupon technology for old media newspapers and broadcasters, has been growing revenue at a monthly compounded rate of roughly 50 percent, according to co-founder and CEO Ken Kalb. I profiled the company, which counted nearly 1.9 million page views for all its sites from … Next Page »

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Bruce V. Bigelow was the editor of Xconomy San Diego from 2008 to 2018. Read more about his life and work here. Follow @bvbigelow

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