Verigy: Advantest Offer Is 'Superior'

Maker of semiconductor test systems said an acquisition offer from Advantest is better than an earlier deal Verigy made to buy rival LTX-Credence.

CUPERTINO, Calif. (AP) -- Verigy Ltd., a maker of semiconductor test systems, said Monday an acquisition offer from Advantest Corp. is better than an earlier deal Verigy made to buy rival LTX-Credence Corp.

Verigy's shares jumped $1.25, or 9.8 percent, to $14 in morning trading.

Tokyo-based Advantest, which also makes chip testing systems, is offering $15 per share for Verigy. Based on Verigy's 60.7 million outstanding shares as of March 1, the deal is worth $910.8 million.

Verigy, which is based in Cupertino, Calif., said it plans to withdraw its recommendation for shareholders to approve an agreement it reached in November to buy LTX-Credence Corp. Verigy valued the deal, in which LTX shareholders would have received 0.96 share for each LTX share, at about $438 million at the time. Upon closing, Verigy and LTX-Credence shareholders would have owned about 56 percent and 44 percent, respectively, of the combined company.

LTX has until March 25 to make another proposal. It said in a statement Monday it is "exploring all rights and remedies available to it under the merger agreement."

U.S.-traded shares of Advantest rose 46 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $17.06 in late morning trading.

Shares of LTX-Credence slid 7 cents to $8.38.

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