Motorola Shops Set-top Business
November 12, 2009
SCHAUMBERG, ILL.: Motorola is
exploring the sale if it’s $4.5 billion TV set-top box division, according to
published reports. The company has around 27 percent of the global set-top
business in cable set-tops and the same marketshare of IP set-tops, In-Stat
says. The set-top unit, which includes network gear, had sales of $10.1 billion
last year. It’s primary competitor in the set-top arena is Scientific-Atlanta,
which is owned by Cisco. Private equity investors and competing set-top makers
are said to be looking at the business.
Two potential PE suitors include TPB and Silver Lake Partners, The Wall Street Journal reports. Others
include set-top makers Huawei Technologies in China and U.K.-based Pace.
If the division doesn’t sell, Motorola is said to be planning to spin itself
into two publicly traded companies. Previous efforts to sell the once-booming
handset division have been unsuccessful. Motorola’s last big handset was the
Razr. The company recently introduced the iPhone competitor, Droid, but the
jury’s still out on that one. WSJ
said the set-top business surpassed the handset business this year.