CAMBRIDGE, England Acorn Computers Ltd. has changed its name to Element 14 Ltd. as part of its conversion from a computer designer and manufacturer to a developer of software and silicon intellectual property (IP).
Element 14 is an operating company of Acorn Group plc and continues to trade on the London Stock Exchange. The company retains a 24.8 percent stake in ARM Holdings plc, a well known silicon IP company.
In the last few weeks Acorn has announced the sale of its 50 percent stake in Xemplar Ltd., a supplier of educational computers, to Apple Computer Inc., its joint venture partner in Xemplar, and has acquired a seven-person IC design team in Bristol, England, from STMicroelectronics. These moves were made as part of Element 14's concentration on the creation of multimedia intellectual property, initially for the digital TV market.
The company's name refers to silicon, which has an atomic number of 14 on the p eriodic table.
Headquartered in Cambridge, Element 14 also has silicon IP development facilities in Bristol, U.K. and offices in Palo Alto, Calif.
Andy Mee, senior vice president for sales and marketing at Element 14, said the Bristol site would be expanded and would work exclusively on developing cores, while the Cambridge site would develop cores, silicon architecture and complementary software.
"We anticipate the Element 14 name will help to establish our IP as the technology of choice in the digital TV technology arena, and that it will strongly support our progress into the markets of the next millennium," said Stan Boland, chief executive officer of Element 14.