Shares of Seagate stock skyrocketed 21 percent in after-hours trading after the hard drive maker disclosed it had been approached about going private.
"Seagate Technology announced today that it has received a preliminary indication of interest regarding a going private transaction," Seagate said a statement. "The company is in discussions with the party from whom it received the indication of interest, and its board of directors is evaluating the indication of interest and other strategic alternatives. The company has retained Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated and Perella Weinberg Partners LP to provide financial advice and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and Arthur Cox as legal counsel. There is no assurance that the company will receive a formal offer or that any transaction will take place.
"Neither the company nor its representatives will be providing any additional comments regarding the preliminary indication of interest."
According to a report in The New York Times, private equity firms TPG and Kohlbert Kravis Roberts are the two parties making a joint bid for Seagate. Seagate's market value stands at $6 billion, and should it agree to a buyout, it would rank as the biggest private equity deal this year.
Back in the late 90s, web portals like Excite were the beating heart of the web. Then along came this young upstart Google with all their newfangled ideas and clever engineers. But before the search giant had become a giant, Larry and Sergey were looking to sell to the highest bidder. In 1999, Excite could have had Google for under $1 million, and they passed.
The story was related at TechCrunch Disrupt by Vinod Khosla, former Excite backer and man behind Khosla Ventures. Apparently, Larry and Sergey asked for a mere $1 million for Google. Excite CEO George Bell turned them down. Another offer for around $750,000 was also rejected by Excite. For reference, Google's market cap as of now, is $167 billion. Ouch.
Hindsight is 20/20, so we can't fault Excite for misreading the tea leaves. But it makes you wonder what a Google-free world would be like.
TechCrunch may be famous for running stories of dubious reliability, but this one is for sure. AOL has acquired the blogging network that covers sites like TechCrunch proper, Mobile Crunch, and Crunch Base. Much as they did with the acquisition of Weblogs Inc., AOL looks to be taking a hands-off approach to the TechCrunch network. "TechCrunch and its associated properties and conferences will join the AOL Technology Network while retaining their editorial independence..." said AOL in the press release.
No one is talking directly about price, but many have been floating numbers in the tens of millions. Some estimates go as high as $75 million. It is unclear if TechCrunch founder Mike Arrington will stay or go, but most observers are betting on 'go". After all, it's a pretty big payday. TechCrunch writers will reportedly split a small amount of stock, which will make for a nice bit of walking around money too.
AOL has been busily transforming into a content company over the last few years, and this is just one more example of that process. Having Engadget and TechCrunch under one roof makes AOL a real force online.
IBM is looking to expand its business analytics offerings and is willing to spend big bucks to do it. To prove it, Big Blue just went and dropped $1.7 billion acquiring Netezza, a provider of data warehouse appliances.
"IBM is bringing analytics to the masses," said Steve Mills, senior vice president and group executive, IBM Software and Systems, in a statement. "We continue to evolve our capabilities for systems integration, bringing together optimized hardware and software, in response to increasing demand for technology that delivers true business value."
Wheeling and dealing in the data warehousing sector has become a trend as of late, if not a highly competitive one. IBM's acquisition of Netezza comes just a month after HP and Dell engaged in a heated bidding war over data storage company 3Par. Arvind Krishna, IBM's general manager for information management, wouldn't say whether or not the public bidding war for 3Par prompted IBM to go after Netezza, saying only that the two firms have been partners for a few years now.
Just as many imagined, Dell has finally given up its pursuit of data storage provider 3PAR after engaging in a fierce bidding war with arch-rival Hewlett-Packard for around two weeks. Once the world's leading PC maker, Dell announced earlier today that it won't be increasing its most recent bid to acquire 3PAR, making the coveted storage vendor's acquisition by HP a mere formality.
The deal worth $2.4 billion, or $33 per share, was quickly approved by the boards of directors of both HP and 3PAR following news of Dell's exit. The two companies have signed a definitive merger agreement. As for Dell, it has already received the $72 million break-up fee that it was entitled to on the termination of its merger agreement with 3PAR.
Dell really wants to acquire to data storage provider 3Par. So does Hewlett Packard. As a result, what started off as a $1.13 billion bid now sits at $2 billion, and the bidding war still doesn't appear to be over.
It all started when Dell agreed to purchase 3Par for $1.13 billion in mid-August. While the deal appeared imminent, rival HP stepped in just a week later with a $1.5 billion bid of its own. What would follow is a high-dollar game of "outbid your opponent," and for the time being, HP is winning with a $2 billion offer.
"Both companies would benefit from 3Par," said IDC Vice President Benjamin Woo. "HP is due for a full refresh for its mid- to high-end storage portfolio" while "Dell wants to own a product for the top price bands in the $100,000+ range."
How high are HP and Dell willing to go? That remains to be seen, but according to each one's financial reports, HP is sitting on $14.8 billion in gross cash and Dell has $13.1 billion in cash and investments.
Having just spent nearly $8 billion acquiring security firm McAfee, reports are starting to surface that Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is now eying up Infineon Technologies AG's wireless unit, Bloomberg reports.
"Intel's big strategy is to be at the heart of computing everywhere," said Alex Guana, an analyst at JMP Securities LLC in San Francisco. "The McAfee acquisition helps make that a secure equation and a potential Infineon acquisition would give them inroads into the mobility space."
If Infineon sounds at all familiar, that's because they're the ones who produce processors for Apple's iPhone and Samsung's Galaxy S smartphones. Infineon ranks as Europe's second largest chip maker, and an acquisition of its wireless business would cost Intel about $1.91 billion, according to "two people familiar with the talks." Think about that for a moment. Should this go through, Intel will have spent close to $10 billion in less than a month snatching up companies and businesses to beef up its mobile strategy.
HP and Dell took the bidding war for data storage company 3PAR to a whole new level today. Although it was a day that began with HP as the favorite to acquire 3PAR and ended the way it started, it wasn't an unremarkable one by any means as there was a lot in between.
Dell countered Hewlett-Packard's $1.5 billion buyout bid with a $1.6 billion offer of its own earlier in the day, but the world's leading PC maker wasted little time in bettering Dell's offer. Its latest offer: $1.8 billion, or $27 per share, in cash.
HP's message to Dell is clear: "It's on like Donkey Kong." That's what happens when, just a week after you agree to acquire a company for $1.13 billion, your rival steps in with an offer of $1.5 billion for the same company.
In this case, HP is the aggressive rival hoping to scoop up data storage provider 3Par, which seemed all but sold to Dell just a short while ago. HP has offered to pay $24 per share for 3Park, a third more than Dell's bid of $18 per share.
This tug-of-war between HP and Dell has had a positive effect on 3Par's shares so far, which rose to $6.66, or 37 percent, to $24.70 in premarket trading. Should HP ultimately win the bidding war, it would be adding to a data storage business that already accounts for about 13 percent of its bottom line.
Intel, the world's largest chip maker, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire security firm McAfee by purchasing the company's common stock at $48 per share. That works out to about $7.68 billion for a deal that was unanimously approved by both boards of directors.
"With the rapid expansion of growth across a vast array of Internet-connected devices, more and more of the elements of our lives have moved online," said Paul Otellini, Intel president and CEO. "In the past, energy-efficient performance and connectivity have defined computing requirements. Looking forward, security will join those as a third pillar of what people demand from all computing experiences.
“The addition of McAfee products and technologies into the Intel computing portfolio brings us incredibly talented people with a track record of delivering security innovations, products and services that the industry and consumers trust to make connecting to the Internet safer and more secure,” Otellini added.
What exactly Intel plans to do with this high dollar acquisition remains to be seen, but the chip maker did say it would be "introducing a product from our strategic partnership next year." Intel also talked up the importance of securing Internet connected devices and wireless mobility, hinting that future products will go beyond the desktop.