Wolfson snaps up Sonaptic

Wolfson Microelectronics aims to strengthen its position in audio semiconductors after its £12m purchase of Sonaptic, a specialist in advanced micro-acoustic technologies.

Edinburgh-based Wolfson said the acquisition would play a key role in its growth strategy, which aims to offer features such as advanced active noise cancellation, 3D sound and acoustic echo cancellation for consumer electronics applications such as music players, portable gaming consoles and automotive audio systems.

Wolfson may pay about £8m more for Buckinghamshire-based Sonaptic if it meets certain targets. Its technology will be added as a feature to some of Wolfson’s existing products enabling the creation of new types of chips.

Sonaptic employees more than 30 people, the majority of them engineers who are expected to remain with the newly-acquired operation, said Wolfson.

The firm’s four founders will also stay on to help with the ongoing commercialisation of the technology they helped to develop over the last 12 years.

Wolfson’s chief executive Dave Shrigley said: ‘Sonaptic’s technology is of keen interest to several leading consumer electronics companies which are anxious to co-operate in developing the initial noise cancellation chip specifications.’