Google buys Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion


Motorola purchase will “supercharge” the Android ecosystem, Google says

Google has purchased Motorola’s smartphone business Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion (£7.66 billion) – a move Google says will “supercharge” its Android ecosystem.

Motorola Mobility will continue to be run as a separate company as it has done since January when Motorola split the company in two which also saw the formation of Motorola Solutions in the process.

Motorola’s 17,000 mobile patents are included in the deal.

Speaking about the purchase which saw Google buy Motorola Mobility’s shares for $40 (£24.50) each, Google CEO Larry Page he looked forward to the two companies combining resources.

“Motorola Mobility’s total commitment to Android has created a natural fit for our two companies. Together, we will create amazing user experiences that supercharge the entire Android ecosystem for the benefit of consumers, partners and developers,” Page said.

“I look forward to welcoming Motorolans to our family of Googlers.”

Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha (pictured) said: “This transaction offers significant value for Motorola Mobility’s stockholders and provides compelling new opportunities for our employees, customers, and partners around the world.

“We have shared a productive partnership with Google to advance the Android platform, and now through this combination we will be able to do even more to innovate and deliver outstanding mobility solutions across our mobile devices and home businesses.”

Google was quick to point out that its Android strategy would remain the same despite the purchase. Its senior vice president of mobile Andy Rubin said the acquisition would however allow the company to break “new ground” in the mobile space.

“We expect that this combination will enable us to break new ground for the Android ecosystem. However our vision for Android is unchanged and Google remains firmly committed to Android as an open platform and a vibrant open source community,” Rubin said.

“We will continue to work with all of our valued Android partners to develop and distribute innovative Android-powered devices.”

The deal is still subject to customary closing conditions including the receipt of regulatory approvals in the US, the EU and other jurisdictions.

Google and Motorola Mobility said the transaction is expected to be fully completed by the end of the year or early 2012.

Rival support

The deal meanwhile has been welcomed by all of Google’s top Android partners – HTC, LG, Sony Ericsson and Samsung, which according to the company were all consulted before the purchase was made.

Speaking about the deal, HTC CEO Peter Chou said: “We welcome the news of today’s acquisition, which demonstrates that Google is deeply committed to defending Android, its partners, and the entire ecosystem”.

Chou’s comments were echoed by Samsung Mobile Communications Division president  J.K. Shin who said: “We welcome today’s news, which demonstrates Google’s deep commitment to defending Android, its partners, and the ecosystem.”

Sony Ericsson president and CEO Bert Nordberg said: “I welcome Google’s commitment to defending Android and its partners.”

LG president and CEO Jong-Seok Park issued an almost identical statement saying: “We welcome Google’s commitment to defending Android and its partners.”