This post appeared yesterday on RealMoney. Click here for a free trial, and enjoy incisive commentary all day, every day.The rally in Qualcomm ( QCOM) in the wake of its $3.1 billion deal opens the door for so many merger ideas, it's almost ridiculous to say. Qualcomm already has a big leg up in the mobile space with hits hammerlock on the 4-G biz, and this Atheros ( ATHR) deal gives it networking capabilities for Bluetooth and other wireless networking technologies. The fact that the Street is lapping the thing up tells you that if you move more aggressively into the mobile internet tsunami space, your stock's going to soar, even if you are already are exposed to it. Qualcomm-Atheros is a blueprint for others that need to get in, particularly Intel ( INTC) and Cisco ( CSCO), two laggards that everyone seems to have given up on. Sure Intel, has bought McAfee, a deal the Street didn't like, but I think that is short-sighted, because I like security plays. Over time, Cisco bought Tandberg and Scientific Atlanta, both deals accomplishing not enough to move the needle, to say the least, although they are integral to the company's "in the home" end-to-end solutions. That said, here's a laundry list of companies that, if they were bought, would send these acquirers higher:
- Acme Packet (APKT) for cell-phone cross-talk.
- Netgear (NTGR), for a similar in-the-home chit to Atheros.
- Cirrus Logic (CRUS) for sound boards in tablets.
- Motricity (MOTR) for solutions to big telco providers' cell problems.
- And if you want to go big, Akamai (AKAM) for streaming video and Nvdia (NVDA) for graphics chips, and Arm Holdings (ARMH) for Apple (AAPL) tablet exposure. All of these could produce a similar rally in Intel or Cisco that we are getting in Qualcomm.