Freescale Sells Virtual Garage to Mentor Graphics

Mentor Graphics Corporation (NASDAQ: MENT) announced that it has acquired the Virtual Garage product line from Freescale, a US-based technology company. Virtual Garage is a software suite that addresses two important topics within the design and management of automotive electrical and electronic systems: the trade-off between value-of-variety and cost-of-complexity caused by optional electronic content; and provision of vehicle-specific design data, such as dynamic electrical schematics, on demand to service networks.

Both topics carry significant profitability implications. Martin O’Brien, general manager of Mentor Graphics Integrated Electrical Systems Division, said, “Virtual Garage is highly complementary to Mentor’s CHS software for electrical systems design and wire harness engineering. Virtual Garage expands our scope both upstream into product planning, where decisions about product configuration complexity significantly impact long-term costs, and downstream into the key area of online service documentation for dealer networks. Our customers consistently tell us that these are both areas that require strong software support.”

The Virtual Garage products are OEM proven and add significant value across the supply chain. Mentor has acquired the relevant intellectual assets and the key architects of the solutions. Mentor also acquired one key commercial contract under the acquisition. Renee Mitchell, director, corporate strategy and business transformation for Freescale, said, “As a responsible supplier it was important to Freescale that Virtual Garage was transferred to the right new owner. Mentor Graphics has world-leading expertise in automotive electrical and electronic design, and the global reach needed to support automotive customers. Although we considered other expressions of interest, it was clear that Mentor is the best company to take Virtual Garage forward.”

Following this technology acquisition, Virtual Garage will be incorporated into Mentor’s automotive industry product portfolio. Virtual Garage will also be featured in several sessions at the upcoming IESF conference in Detroit on March 18, 2010. The sessions are:

  • “Delivering Dealers VIN-based Service Documentation Online and On Demand,” presented by Ron Wadood, wiring diagrams/electrical systems manger, dealer technical operations, Chrysler
  • “Challenges of Automotive Electrical Complexity – The OEM Perspective,” presented by John Antilla, Operations Program Manager, Systems & Components, Chrysler
  • “Managing Electrical Complexity with Virtual Garage,” presented by Brad McCaskey, Mentor Graphics

About Mentor Graphics
Mentor Graphics Corporation (NASDAQ: MENT) is a world leader in electronic hardware and software design solutions, providing products, consulting services and award-winning support for the world’s most successful electronics, semiconductor and transportation companies. Established in 1981, the company reported revenues over the last 12 months of about $800 million and employs approximately 4,425 people worldwide. Corporate headquarters are located at 8005 S.W. Boeckman Road, Wilsonville, Oregon 97070-7777. The company has more than 70 offices worldwide, including Detroit, Munich and Tokyo.

About Freescale Semiconductor
Freescale Semiconductor is a global leader in the design and manufacture of embedded semiconductors for the automotive, consumer, industrial and networking markets. The privately held company is based in Austin, Texas, and has design, research and development, manufacturing or sales operations around the world.

Mentor Graphics is a registered trademark of Mentor Graphics Corporation.