Motorola May Sell Their Set-top and Networking Branch

Posted Tue Nov 17, 2009 at 10:00 AM PST by Mike Attebery

Facing losses from all sides, Motorola may decide to cut and run in the set-top box game.

Motorola is at the point where they need to make a decision. They have three major units – mobile, enterprise mobility, and network mobility – and all three are losing sales. Judging by the coverage of the Droid in the last few weeks, you might think Motorola was at the top of the game when it comes to mobile phones. While the move to Android has certainly helped Motorola’s mobile sales, they’re still facing a loss this coming year.

According to a source near Motorola, the company may be looking for buyers for their network mobility business, which includes home networking devices and set-top boxes. While the business may be down at the moment, Motorola does have a huge share of the set-top market which could make it attractive to prospective buyers.

No potential buyers have yet been named, but the expectation that one of their major competitors could buy the division is high.

Interestingly, the set-top and networking unit of Motorola is the part of the business that has been keeping the company afloat for the last several years, making a profit while the other two divisions took losses. Selling this division would be a bit of an unexpected move, and a bad idea according to analyst Mark Sue. The mobile business hasn’t recovered yet, he says, “so it would be a little too early to cut off the lifeline.”

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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