According to Japanese Sankei Shimbun paper, Panasonic is in talks with Taiwanese HTC and TSMC to sell its mobile phone biz.
Now, that is one wild rumor. Not so much Panasonic’s exit from smartphones – plans for which have been known and discussed for months. But who the potential buyers are.
At first look neither HTC nor TSMC seem like a good candidates for the deal.
With falling revenues, rising marketing costs and restless employees HTC can hardly afford the distraction of major international merger. Even if they’ve had enough spare cash to spend, which they hardly do. And TSMC is world’s biggest contract semiconductor fab, and already has its hands full with its main business. Why on earth would they want to move into smartphones, where they have no expertise, especially taking on such a loser of the industry as Panasonic?
On the other hand, who knows – stranger things have happened in this industry before. HTC recently found some success in Japan with its Butterfly smartphone, so they may want a well known Japanese brand to get easier access to carriers there. TSMC might be looking for a little diversification. If the price is right and if HTC is a willing partner, they may decide – why the heck not?
I still don’t really believe this will happen, but the rumor is already out there. Let’s see what happens
Hat tip to @dnystedt for the pointer
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