Test and Measurement: PCTel to be acquired by Amphenol

The purchase of all PCTel’s outstanding shares will cost Amphenol about $140 million

Test, measurement and antenna company PCTel has agreed to be acquired by global electronics tech company Amphenol, which focuses on interconnect, sensor and antenna solutions.

Amphenol will acquire all outstanding shares of PCTel for $7 per share, in an all-cash transaction valued at about $139.7 million. The transaction is expected to close either in the fourth quarter of this year or in early 2024, at which point PCTel will no longer be a publicly listed company.

“Our team has done an excellent job of growing the business, establishing a leadership position in both antenna and test & measurement innovation, and meeting our customers’ strong global demand for high reliability applications,” said David Neumann, CEO of PCTel. “Amphenol is a leading global provider of interconnect, sensor and antenna solutions. Their sustained financial strength and unique entrepreneurial culture will create a valuable home for our employees around the world. We look forward to the accelerated growth opportunities enabled by the combination of our two companies.”

Jay Sinder, who is chairman of PCTel’s board of directors, noted that the company started a process of reviewing its strategic options nearly a year ago, resulting in the transaction in Amphenol. “With this transaction, we are pleased to deliver cash value to our dedicated stockholders, find a well-aligned company culture for our valuable people, and position PCTEL to embark on its next phase of growth as part of an industry-leading corporation,” Sinder said.

William J. Doherty, president of the Communications Solutions Division of Amphenol, said that the company and its employees will be “an excellent addition to the Amphenol family” and that the company plans to leverage Amphenol’s international presence, customer base and scale to “take PCTEL’s business to new and exciting heights.”

In other test news:

Rohde & Schwarz is expanding its executive board, with the addition of a CTO position to —which is filled by Andreas Pauly, who was the head of the company’s test & measurement division. R&S said that the addition of a CTO to its exec board made sense for its future development, and is the “logical next step” for the company. “To stay relevant in its markets, the company invests a double-digit percentage of its revenue every year in research and development. With an eye to achieving its growth targets, the Executive Board also needs to focus even more closely on the project business,” the company said in a release.

Pauly will focus on the company’s research and development work in addition to maintaining a focus on the company’s test equipment offerings. Pauly has been with the company since 1996 and in his various positions at the company’s T&M division, has “bolstered the division’s resilience to market fluctuations by consistently focusing on a diversified product portfolio and investing in future technologies.”

Christina Gessner will take over Pauly’s position as head of the T&M division. In her most recent role, Gessner served as VP of spectrum and network analyzers, EMC and antenna test equipment. She joined R&S in 2004 and has been the VP of spectrum and network analyzers since 2018.

Anritsu will be showcasing a digital twin solution for automotive testing at a 5G Automotive Association member meeting next week, held at the M-City Facility at the University of Michigan. Anritsu developed the advanced simulation environment with dSPACE, and it is aimed at providing better protection for so-called vulnerable road users (VRUs) such as pedestrians and bicyclists. The demo “provides a digital twin environment for real-world scenarios, so VRU protection testing can be started virtually when features are not yet available on the actual vehicle,” the test company said.

AT&T and the Rural Wireless Association are taking issue with SpaceX’s plans to launch and test a new satellite with cellular capabilities, part of Starlink’s collaboration with T-Mobile US to leverage T-Mo’s midband spectrum for satellite-based direct-to-cellular communications, including emergency SMS. The carrier and the industry association are both framing their objections as mostly procedural, although they also indicate concerns about potential interference. Full story is here.

-What does the 5G user experience look like across different countries? Ookla has new market analysis available. More details are in this story.

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