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Novatel To Acquire Enfora For $64.5 Million

Deal will advance the firm's position in the burgeoning machine-to-machine market.

Novatel Wireless reported Monday that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Enfora for about $64.5 million in a move to enhance its drive into the nascent machine-to-machine (M2M) market.

Enfora sells a range of M2M solutions to enterprises, applications service providers, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), and distributors. The M2M market, predicted to grow at an annual compound rate of more than 22% through 2014 by ABI Research, involves locating radio frequency identification (RFID) technology via remote sensors connected wirelessly. M2M applications are expected to boom as the price of remote sensors drops to the 5-cents-a-device range.

"This acquisition expands our addressable market, broadens our range of complementary products, (and) diversifies our customer base," said Peter Leparulo, chairman and CEO of Novatel, in a statement. "Enfora, more than any other company providing M2M data communications, is focused on adding value with customized software and services and fits with our business strategy of combining hardware and software into integrated solutions."

In a recent analysis of wireless markets, Plunkett Research predicted M2M in combination with nanotechnology will help create automatic controls to gather data from billions of wireless spots. In addition to the rapidly falling RFID sensor prices, Plunket said the capability of inkjet printers to print RFID tags will help drive M2M applications.

Novatel said the Enfora acquisition will help create long-term customer relationships with wireless carriers, cable operators, distributors, retailers, and OEMs in developing and offering M2M applications.

After the acquisition is completed, Novatel said Enfora will operate as a Novatel wireless business unit. Novatel said a majority of Enfora stockholders has approved the acquisition.

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