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Posts Tagged ‘Acquisitions’

Samsung looking to acquire mobile companies (but not RIM)

Friday, May 4th, 2012

Samsung looking to acquire mobile company (but not RIM)

J.K. Shin, president of Samsung’s mobile business, sat down with The Wall Street Journal and revealed that the South Korean manufacturer has begun aggressively hiring foreign software engineers in an effort keep pace with Apple’s iPhone. Samsung, which has traditionally developed its own hardware, is also embracing the possibility of making key acquisitions in the mobile space. “The technology industry is growing very quickly and it is too much of a burden to try to do everything in-house,” Shin said. “There are many qualified workers from India that are very skilled in software. And there are small companies that we can acquire that have good research and development capabilities.”

Shin did not name any potential targets, however, and was quick to shoot down rumors regarding an acquisition of Canada’s Research in Motion. While Google’s purchase of Motorola Mobility has Samsung on edge, the company’s senior vice president of sales and marketing Younghee Lee, maintains that Samsung will continue to work with Android because it is currently the most popular platform.

Shin called the company’s latest flagship smartphone — the Galaxy S III — an example of Samsung’s renewed focus on software. While the phone is based on Google’s Android operating system, Shin highlighted how Samsung engineers were able to write new software and enable unique features such as the Galaxy S III’s face-detection and eye-tracking capabilities, which control various functions on the handset based on whether or not the user is looking at the display.

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Switched On: Big kicks not all for starters

Sunday, April 29th, 2012

Each week Ross Rubin contributes Switched On, a column about consumer technology.

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The end of last week’s Switched On left doubt for the future of dedicated devices that tread on the turf of smartphones. After all, funding is key to every major new product initiative and, despite the vast fortunes of many Silicon Valley engineers that have been accumulated via IPOs and acquisitions, few wish to take on the risk of fronting a new consumer device themselves.(In 2007, the handheld FlipStart PC was hatched from FlipStart Labs, funded by Vulcan Ventures, the investment arm of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.)

Most venture capitalists abhor the device business; it is a rare device that makes it to the spotlight of startup debutante balls such as DEMO, TechCrunch Disrupt, or Launch. Even most of the 94 companies at CES’ Eureka Park were not developing end-user devices Where, then, can a device entrepreneur go for funding and pick up some publicity in the process?

Continue reading Switched On: Big kicks not all for starters

Switched On: Big kicks not all for starters originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 29 Apr 2012 17:30:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Facebook IPO may be delayed until June

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Due to a string of acquisitions and other business distractions, Facebook’s multi-billion dollar initial public offering that was rumored to be set for May 17th may be delayed until early or mid-June, according to CNBC. Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has not been preparing for the IPO, but instead has been more focused on running the business and making acquisitions. As a result, the social networking giant’s IPO date will reportedly be pushed back so the company has time to make the appropriate preparations. Facebook filed with the SEC in February, and could raise as much as $10 billion at a $100 billion valuation when it goes public in the coming months. Facebook’s IPO is expected to top Google’s $1.9 billion offering by a wide margin, making it the largest Internet IPO in history. Facebook’s shares will be listed on the NASDAQ exchange under the “FB” ticker symbol.

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Facebook fighting Twitter, Google with acquisitions

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

Facebook is expecting to acquire a total of 20 new companies in 2011 in an effort to better compete with Twitter and Google, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday. The social network purchased 10 new companies last year and just one in 2009, but has already acquired 13 various firms this year. Most recently, Facebook purchased the group-messaging service Beluga, which was created by several former Google employees, and re-released it as the “Facebook Messenger” product for the iPhone and Android smartphones. In an interview with Bloomberg, Facebook’s director of corporate development Vaughan Smith explained the strategy behind Facebook’s acquisitions. “Two years ago we didn’t have a track record in acquisitions,” Smith said. “While we expected them to work well, it was still a crapshoot how they’d turn out. We’ve built a culture that supports entrepreneurs, and it’s working incredibly well.” Facebook other big purchases this year include Snaptu, design firm Sofa and Push Pop Press.

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TAT-astic native PlayBook development discussed and demoed on video

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

Yesterday at BlackBerry World 2011 we were fortunate to sit down and chat with Chris Smith, Senior Director of the BlackBerry Developer Platform, along with Rasmus and Karl from The Astonishing Tribe. One of RIM’s recent acquisitions, TAT is known for some rather, well… astonishing user interface designs, and for infusing a bit of magic into some of the PlayBook’s apps, such as the bundled picture viewer and calculator. We were shown a number of demos, including the downloadable Scrapbook app, a rather nifty contact list, and a location-aware news reader. Over the years, TAT has built an engine and framework that make it easy for developers to create powerful and attractive UIs, and some of this will be making its way into the PlayBook’s native software development kit sometime this summer. Along with support for Open GL ES 2.0, SQLite, cURL, and POSIX (amongst others), this NDK will provide API’s to control the audio system, the cameras, and the sensors — possibly even code to enable stereoscopic 3D output over HDMI, as demonstrated before. We know that’s a lot of exciting stuff to sink your teeth into, so be sure to get a taste of it by watching our video.

TAT-astic native PlayBook development discussed and demoed on video originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 05 May 2011 08:42:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Google spends a few more million, picks up Widevine DRM software firm

Sunday, December 5th, 2010

Two acquisitions in as many days? Say it ain’t so! Prior to even unboxing Phonetic Arts, Google has now snapped up Seattle-based Widevine. Truth be told, you’re probably taking advantage of the company’s technology without even being aware of it — it’s used in over 250 million web connected HDTVs and streamers around the globe, and it’s primarily designed to thwart piracy attempts while enabling consumers to enjoy content on a wider array of devices. As these things tend to do, neither outfit is talking prices, but it’s fairly obvious why El Goog would want a firm like this in its portfolio. Moreover, it’s borderline comical that Viacom’s pushing an appeal in order to pit Google as an anti-studio, pro-piracy monster while it’s spending hard-earned cash on a DRM layer. At any rate, Google’s not getting into specific plans just yet, only stating its intentions to maintain Widevine’s agreements, provide support for existing and future clients as well as “building upon [the technology] to enhance both Widevine’s products and its own.”

Google spends a few more million, picks up Widevine DRM software firm originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 05 Dec 2010 13:20:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Panasonic to spend $9.4b on buying out Sanyo and PEW shares, posts robust quarterly profits

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Clearly dissatisfied with what it sees in the mirror, Panasonic has today announced its decision to bulk up. A new share issue expected to raise ¥500 billion ($5.7 billion) will be enacted soon as part of raising the cash to complete the buyout of Sanyo Electric and Panasonic Electric Works. Don’t ask us why a company named Panasonic has to buy another company with Panasonic in its name, but them’s the facts. The total outlay is expected to come in at around $9.4 billion and is justified by Panasonic as fundamental to its future strategy of expanding into environmentally friendly tech and developing a three-pronged operating paradigm by 2012. The Osaka-based company is also reporting a ¥43.7b ($498 million) profit for the last quarter — a major upswing from a ¥53b loss in the same period last year — though that’s information the market seems to have ignored. Panasonic shares have plunged down 7.7% in the immediate aftermath of the acquisitions being announced, while Sanyo’s have shot up. Click past the break for the novella-sized press release explaining the details of the deal.

Continue reading Panasonic to spend $9.4b on buying out Sanyo and PEW shares, posts robust quarterly profits

Panasonic to spend $9.4b on buying out Sanyo and PEW shares, posts robust quarterly profits originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 29 Jul 2010 06:44:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Apple Stole Lala From Google, and Things Are Just Getting Ugly [Unconfirmed]

Thursday, December 10th, 2009

So, reason Apple paid $85 million for Lala is because they were stealing it from Google. Which is like payback, because Google stole Admob from Apple, and oh, lordee is this fight gruesome.

The WSJ uses Apple’s purchase of streaming music service Lala, swooping in to pry it out of Google hands, as a way to tell the tale of two humpbacked giants clashing in a conflict that’s been going on since earlier this summer, first marked—publicly anyway—by Apple’s high-profile non-rejection rejection of Google Voice from the App Store.

More recently, Apple tried to buy AdMob—one of the dominant players in mobile advertising—not only to make more money off of iPhone apps, but to keep Google from buying them. Interestingly, the WSJ says Apple “has been exploring buying iPhone-related technologies that it doesn’t yet have,” meaning we could be seeing more Apple acquisitions soon, or perhaps more bloody bouts of Apple and Google wrestling over companies, especially since Google wants into music, and Apple wants into mobile ads, according to the WSJ.

The other interesting bit the WSJ drops is that “Google is also talking to handset manufacturers about building phones with more prominent Google branding and more preinstalled Google applications,” which sounds sorta kinda like a Google phone.

The WSJ article seems to take a tone of surprise, or shock, that Apple and Google compete on so many fronts, and I’m not quite sure where it’s coming from. They’re so huge, that guess what? They’re gonna bump into each other. It’s just inevitable. And it isn’t even ugly yet. But it will be. [WSJ via MacRumors]



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