Google flogs Motorola set-top box biz for $2.35bn

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Google's Motorola Mobility business has sold its set-top box arm to communications technology company Arris for $2.35 billion.

The deal means that British set-top box maker Pace misses out on acquiring the firm that could have propelled it further into the lucrative US market, where it already gets two-thirds of its revenue.

Pace said it was unable to reach a deal with Google that would have been in the best interests of its shareholders.

Mike Pulli, chief executive of Pace, said: "We viewed the potential acquisition of Google's Motorola Home business as an opportunity to accelerate our stated strategy, but only if real shareholder value could be delivered.

"Although we had the support of our major shareholders and committed facilities, we could not reach an appropriate conclusion to the potential transaction."

The Motorola Home division made $3.4 billion of revenue in the last 12 months, but the future of this part of the business has been in doubt ever since the search giant acquired Motorola earlier this year for $12.5 billion (7.75 billion).

The deal with Arris means Google now has a 15.7 per cent stake in the firm.

Arris will also see its patent portfolio increase and will have access to Motorola Mobility patents as well.

Dennis Woodside, chief executive of Motorola Mobility, said: "The industry faces its biggest technology transformation, and together Arris and Motorola will be able to accelerate related innovations such as the introduction of the IP connected home environments that service providers need and that their consumers crave."

Bob Stanzione, Arris chairman and chief executive, added: "This transformational combination of two complementary businesses will create a leading end-to-end provider of today's video, data, and voice products and tomorrow's next-generation IP-based broadband products."

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.