Confirmed: Google will sell Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.91 billion

ChinaDaily, Reuters, and The New York Times are all independently claiming that Lenovo is gearing up to take Motorola off of Google’s hands. Reports peg the sale at $3 billion. Google originally paid $12.5 billion for Motorola and sold off the set-top box division for $2.35 billion, so if the reports are true, Google would be taking a hit of about $7 billion.

Motorola has been losing money, but a turnaround seemed to be in full swing. Google had sold off the parts of Motorola it didn’t want, including the aforementioned set-top box division and a few factories, while cutting a significant amount of the staff. Google installed its own executives at the top of the company, and it hired the former head of DARPA to run the R&D department. Google seemed to understand the task ahead of it, repeatedly stating that turning around Motorola would involve clearing an “18-month pipeline” of work-in-progress devices—Google only took over Motorola in May 2012.

Recent products, like the Moto X and Moto G, were well-received and even innovative, and the CEO of Motorola recently talked about building a $50 smartphone. If Google does sell Motorola for $3 billion, it will have taken a struggling company, done all the cleanup work, set it on a good trajectory, and still lost a ton of money.

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via Ars Technica


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