WSJ: Google’s auction for Moto ending today

Fri, 12/07/2012 - 2:10pm
Mike Robuck

Google is reportedly closing up its auction for Motorola Mobility’s Home unit today, with Arris, Pace and Technicolor among the list of prospective suitors.

Citing three unnamed sources that are involved in the bidding process, The Wall Street Journal posted a story that said the last round of bids were due today, although the deadline could be extended, according to one of the sources.

Two sources told The Journal that the bids could be in the $1.5 billion to $2 billion range, while a third said Moto’s set-top box and hardware division could fetch as high as $2.5 billion. Google would be willing to finance the deal, according to one of the sources.

Google has been stripping the patent-rich cupboards of Motorola, but supposedly the cable-related hardware patents will go to the auction winner. In May, Google paid $12.5 billion to buy Motorola Mobility, in part to protect its Android-based assets.

There has been speculation that patent litigation between Motorola and TiVo, which has gone on for more than a year, has hampered the sale of the Home unit.

To alleviate some concerns, former Charter Communications CTO Marwan Fawaz was hired as executive vice president of Motorola’s Home division in June.

In a July SEC filing, Google valued Motorola's patents and technology at $5.5 billion and pegged its customer relationships at $730 million.

Over the summer, Google cut about 4,000 jobs from Motorola, or 20 percent of its workforce.


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