Qualcomm Inc. agreed to sell wholly-owned subsidiary Omnitracs Inc. to Vista Equity Partners, an Austin, Texas, private equity group, for $800 million in cash, Qualcomm said.

Launched in 1985, the unit was Qualcomm’s initial foray into using its cutting-edge wireless technology called CDMA to generate revenue. The systems allow trucking companies to track their fleets using satellites and global positioning software.

The transaction is Vista Equity’s second big purchase involving a San Diego based business, following its May acquisition of Websense Inc., a security software company, for $907 million.

Vista said it chose to buy Omnitracs because of its strong position, product offerings, loyal customers and its employees. The private equity firm, focused on high-tech investments, said it is uniquely qualified to help Omnitracs continue its growth.

Assuming approvals from a variety of regulatory channels, the transaction is expected to close by the end of 2013, the company said.

Barclays Capital Inc. acted as Qualcomm’s financial adviser.

—Mike Allen