AuthenTec, a US mobile and network security provider, announced Friday that it has agreed to be acquired by Apple.
In regulatory filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) posted on AuthenTec's website, the company said Apple will pay $8 a share for its stock, representing a 56.9 percent premium to AuthenTec's closing share price Thursday, reported Xinhua.
Apple will pay a total of about $356 million for the acquisition, the biggest deal it has done in quite some time, according to a report by technology news website AllThingsD.
AuthenTec, headquartered in the US state of Florida, offers a diverse range of mobile and network security products to companies including Cisco, Fujitsu, HP, Lenovo, Motorola and Samsung.
One of its key offerings is fingerprint sensor, which can be used for authentication and security in mobile payments by phones, and is seen by some analysts as a target of Apple's purchase.
In its filings with the SEC, AuthenTec said it has reached agreement with Apple to share between them certain confidential information that "may be used solely for the purpose of developing a 2D fingerprint sensor for Apple that is suitable for use in an Apple product".
Apple may also use the acquisition to beef up its intellectual property in the increasingly competitive mobile payment market.
Under their agreements, Apple is paying $20 million to buy non-exclusive licenses and certain rights of AuthenTec's technology and patents. Apple also has the option to license technology and patents from AuthenTec on a perpetual, non-exclusive basis for up to $115 million.
AuthenTec said the deal, subject to regulatory approval and other conditions, is expected to close in the third quarter of 2012.