Qatalyst strikes again, but bigger

Contact: Brenon Daly

When Jason DiLullo joined Qatalyst Partners last April, the boutique firm announced that he would play a major role in expanding the firm into semiconductor deals. Indeed he did. Qatalyst is getting sole credit for advising Atheros Communications on its sale to Qualcomm, the largest chip acquisition in four years. (On the other side, Goldman Sachs and Barclays Capital advised Qualcomm.) With an equity value of $3.6bn, it is Qatalyst’s largest deal – by about $1bn, no less – since it opened its doors in March 2008.

The chip deal brings the total value of the 10 transactions that Qatalyst has worked on to more than $17bn. Of course, the firm is primarily known for its role in helping to consolidate the storage sector, working on the sales of Isilon Systems and 3PAR last year, as well as Data Domain in mid-2009. (All three of those companies were erased from the market at their highest-ever valuation.) Collectively, the equity value of those three storage deals is about $7bn – ‘only’ twice the amount of Qatalyst’s sole chip deal.