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Microchip Technology Proposes New Atmel Board

Chip maker said Wednesday it will nominate a new board for Atmel Corp. in its push to buy the company.

CHANDLER, Ariz. (AP) -- Chip maker Microchip Technology Inc. said Wednesday it will nominate a new board for Atmel Corp. in its push to buy the company.

Microchip and ON Semiconductor Corp. made an unsolicited bid to purchase San Jose, Calif.-based Atmel last month, offering $5 per share in cash, or $2.3 billion.

Atmel's board rejected the deal, arguing the price undervalued the company.

In a joint statement Wednesday, Steve Sanghi, the head of Microchip, and Keith Jackson, ON's chief executive, said that "given the response of the Atmel Board, Microchip intends to take the offer directly to Atmel's shareholders by proposing an alternate slate of directors for Atmel's next shareholders meeting."

Atmel could not immediately be reached for comment.

Microchip and ON have said they would finance the deal in part by selling Atmel's nonvolatile memory and automotive units.

The purchase price represented a 52 percent premium over Atmel's closing stock price the day before the offer was made.

Shares of Chandler, Ariz.-based Microchip shed 10 cents to $20.78 in morning trading, while ON Semiconductor shares lost 5 cents to $4.39. Atmel shares rose 2 cents to $4.29.

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