Instagram made a billion dollars, why not WhatsApp?
WhatsApp has become the de facto standard when it comes to cross platform communications, and as bizarre as this might sound, mobile smartphone titan Google is rumored to be considering a $1 billion acquisition. According to DigitalTrends the deal was initiated four or five weeks ago, however they claim WhatsApp is “playing hardball” in an attempt to drive up the price.
Back in late January Belkin announced it would be buying up the Linksys brand from Cisco, a company that seems utterly determined to exit the consumer market as quickly as possible. It was hard to imagine anything would sour the deal given how determined Cisco is to liquidate non-enterprise brands, but we can now confirm its official.
A group of key shareholders stand a fighting chance of derailing Michael Dell’s ambitions to take the company he founded private.
The possibility of a privately held Dell has sparked our imagination, and also left us scratching our heads. As one of the leading PC OEM’s of our generation Dell has had a profound impact on personal computing, however, they also have a long history of failure that shouldn’t be forgotten. The big question facing Dell shareholders today is what the company’s long term prospects are, and if a $24.4 billion buyout offer by Michael Dell and his consortium is in their best interest.
Microsoft's $2 billion loan helped Michael Dell and partners purchase Dell for $24.4 billion.
First things first -- if you haven't heard by now, Dell is going private. Michael Dell, with the help of private equity firm Silver Lake and a significant loan from Microsoft, have agreed to pay Dell's public shareholders $13.65 a share, valuing the transaction at $24.4 billion. Now Mr. Dell is free to run the company without having to answer to shareholders, and while it will likely be years before we know if this was in the best interest of Dell, there's an interesting side story involving Microsoft that deserves attention.
Cisco found a way out of the consumer networking market, thanks to Belkin.
Call it an end of an era, if you wish, but Cisco is hightailing it out of the consumer space after selling off its Home Networking Business Unit to Belkin for an undisclosed sum of money. The deal includes the familiar Linksys brand, which Cisco acquired back in 2003. At the time, Linksys had 305 employees and revenues of more than $500 million. All of its products were branded Linksys by Cisco following the transaction, though Cisco has reportedly been looking to get out of the consumer space for some time now.
Much to the chagrin of Acer, Microsoft is making a run at hardware with its Surface RT and Surface Pro tablets, and those might be only the first of many more products to come. Microsoft's dancing a fine line with hardware in trying to set the bar for Windows 8 devices without completely ticking off its OEM partners, but it's also taken a big step towards an Apple-like business model. If Microsoft decides to go further, a major acquisition starts to make sense, and two names that have been thrown out there are Nokia and Nvidia.
Die hard fans of the iconic Star Wars franchise are freaking out after learning that George Lucas just sold Lucasfilm to Disney for $4.05 billion, but after suffering through a trio of sequels that brought Jar Jar Binks into the world, maybe this isn't such a bad thing. Regardless, it happened, and Disney is already planning a new Star Wars movie, which it's targeting for a 2015 release.
Dell may have to change its name to Daddy Big Bucks with the way it's throwing around cash in recent times. Having already made a number of software purchases this year, including a deal for for SonicWall back in March reportedly worth $1.2 billion, the latest domino to fall into Dell's hands is Quest Software. Dell has agreed to pay $28 per share in cash for each share of Quest, valuing the purchase price at around $2.4 billion.
As PC enthusiasts you have every right to be skeptical of OnLive as a service, but let’s just say we are impressed beyond belief that it works at all. Nothing will ever beat the experience you get with a tricked out PC, however anyone who has fired up Crysis on a netbook and actually given the service a fair shake knows they’ve managed the impossible. It would seem Microsoft agrees, and actually considering buying the service before it got too dangerous.