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Buying Altera fits with Intel's strategy of going after new growth markets like wearable tech and Big Data. Altera's chip technology is widely used in data centers.
According to The Wall Street Journal, which broke the story, Intel and Altera are in "advanced talks." The price is unknown, but a 25% to 30% premium on Altera's value before word got out puts the potential deal in the neighborhood of $13 billion. The deal would be Intel's biggest ever. And the price will just about double Intel's debt. Yet the deal would give Intel's fastest-growing business – its data center division – a turbo-boost. And that, in turn, will serve as a fresh catalyst for Intel stock.