mergers and acquisitions

Tim Bradshaw

Valuations in technology mergers and acquisitions nearly doubled last year and have continued to rise into 2012, even as dealmaking has waned in other areas this year, a study has found.

American Appraisal, a valuation advisory group, said that on average, the multiples of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation that technology companies paid for acquisitions in 2011 leapt from 7.7x in 2010 to 14.1x in 2011, a trend it says has continued during 2012. Read more

When HTC chief executive Peter Chou said this month that he was on the lookout for further acquisitions, he wasn’t kidding. The Taiwanese smartphone company on Tuesday announced it had acquired Inquisitive Minds, a US company that developed Zoodles, a kids-friendly browser designed to give children a safe browsing environment. Read more

Joseph Menn

Yahoo’s investment bank is “fielding inquiries from multiple parties” about various options that could include a sale of all or some of the company, according to an all-hands email sent Friday by Yahoo’s founders and chairman. Read more

Acer boosted its cloud computing capabilities on Thursday by announcing that it plans to spend $320m to acquire iGware, a US cloud computing company whose technology powers Nintendo’s WiFi Connection. Read more

Robin Harding

NEC, Casio and Hitachi announced today that they are merging their mobile handset divisions. The following two graphs explain why:

Handset sales in Japan have been falling steadily since 2007, when the mobile networks cut subsidies on new phones, and the market has now all but halved in size. The blue line shows the twelve-month moving average of sales and the data is from the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association. Read more

Joseph Menn

Only 40 venture capital funds managed to raise money in the first quarter, the sparsest showing since the third quarter of 2003, according to data released today by the National Venture Capital Assn. Of those, just 3 were funds at new firms.

The total amount of dollars dropped as well, to $4.32 bn from $7.12 bn a year earlier, although that’s still better than the fourth quarter of 2008, when investors pledged a mere $3.52 bn. Read more