ScanSoft Negotiating to Buy ART Advanced Recognition Technologies

According to a story published by Globes [online], Tel Aviv-based ART - Advanced Recognition Technologies is in advanced acquisition negotiations with US company ScanSoft.

Competing with ScanSoft, ART is developing voice and handwriting identification software for wireless telephones and handheld computers. ScanSoft filed a lawsuit against ART in April, alleging that ART had infringed its patent for voice identification technology for dialing from a wireless device.

Sources close to ART said that the acquisition negotiations were part of a claim settlement, and that the company value for the acquisition would reflect the patent infringement damage.

Founded in 1990, ART has 60 employees. Its shareholders include US venture capital fund Bessemer Venture Partners, JP Morgan, Eurofund of Israel, Investech Investment, Nomura Holdings, and Leumi and Co. Investment. ART has raised $30 million to date in four rounds. Company revenue totaled $4.5 million in 2003.

ScanSoft's market cap is $409 million, and the company has $28 million in cash. ART declined to respond to the report.

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