That anyone would buy Motorola’s handset business for $12.5 billion is a massive tribute to Sanjay Jha.
When Jha took over as CEO in the summer of 2008, the business was losing the best part of a billion a quarter – $840 million of losses in Q308.
Jha put between $500 million and $1 billion into new product development betting on Android.
The H1 2009 loss was $885 million.
H1 2010 revenue topped $5 billion for a net loss of $132 million.
H1 2011 revenue was $6.6 billion for a loss of $174 million.
By the end of H1, the company had $3.2 billion in cash.
Selling a loss-making company for $12.6 billion is a tribute to Jha’s turnround skills and deal-making abilities.
Leaving aside the value of Motorola’s 24,500 patents – which will help Google to protect Android from patent lawsuits – the purchase seems like a massive bog by Google.
Android is currently in half the world’s smartphones. But now what?
Will Android users like Samsung, HTC, LG, Sony-Ericsson et al want to use an OS which is controlled by a rival handset maker?
I don’t think so despite the ridiculously similar words of support for the takeover issued by the CEOs of HTC, LG and Sony-Ericsson..
Google has already become over-controlling with Android e.g. delaying the release of Honeycomb source code and, apparently, delaying Verizon’s Android handset because it uses rival search engine Bing. Licensees are already uneasy with the way Google in manipulating its Android ownership..
‘This acquisition will not change our commitment to run Android as an open platform,’ says Google.