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In 2000, STMicroelectronics announced it has purchased Waferscale Integration Inc. of Fremont, Calif., a supplier programmable system devices and a partner of the European chipmaker for many years.the acquisition of WSI marks a return to programmable logic, an area the company is also exploring through the development of an FPGA architecture.

Under an acquisition agreement, STMicroelectronics said it is spending $68 million for full ownership of privately-held WSI. Prior to today's announcement, STMicro owned a 14.5% stake in the Silicon Valley company.

With the acquisition, STMicro said it obtains all of WSI's product portfolio, intellectual property, and technologies for nonvolatile memories and memory systems. STMicro has been involved in design and manufacturing of WSI products for a number of years. According to WSI, the company holds 50 patents with an additional 42 pending.

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