Why Symmetricom Shares Skyrocketed

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Symmetricom (NASDAQ: SYMM  ) jumped by more than 50% Tuesday, after the specialist in precise time-keeping technologies announced that it has has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Microsemi (NASDAQ: MSCC  ) for approximately $230 million, or $7.18 per share.

So what: Microsemi closed up by more than 2% following the announcement of the acquisition, which it says should be accretive to its own earnings to the tune of between $0.22 and $0.25 per share in its first full calendar year, ending December 2014.

"The acquisition of Symmetricom will create the largest and most complete timing portfolio in the industry today," Microsemi CEO James Peterson said.

Now what: The deal isn't final just yet, and it's worth noting it also gives Symmetricom until Nov. 8 to solicit superior bids. Per the terms of the agreement, however, acceptance of a higher bid would also result in the payment of "certain termination fees" to Microsemi, so investors probably shouldn't count on seeing that happen. As a result, and with shares of Symmetricom currently sitting at $7.21 per share -- or $0.03 per share above the offer price -- I think Symmetricom investors would be wise to take profits.

What's more, Microsemi investors should remember Symmetricom is currently unprofitable on a GAAP basis (though it did report an adjusted net income last quarter of $0.9 million, or $0.02 per share), so Microsemi will need to ensure those losses don't continue into the foreseeable future.

That said, if everything works out as planned, and with shares of Microsemi currently trading for just 10.6 times next year's estimated earnings, long-term Microsemi investors could certainly be rewarded for their patience.

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