Friday, June 25, 2010

Motorola poised to spin off a debt-free handset group

Details are emerging about Motorola's plan to split in two entities next year, resulting in the spin off its handset unit. This division, according to reports in The Wall Street Journal, will emerge largely debt-free, and will have a cash reserve of $3bn to $4bn. Following a slew of smartphone launches, the company’s handset division is expected to regain profitability by the end of this year, after losing about $5bn over the past three years, resulting in a severe cost cutting program.

The separated device business would be called Motorola Mobility, say the reports, and will also include the set-top-box businesses. The remaining assets, which include the wireless infrastructure, enterprise and public safety activities, will be grouped under the name Motorola Solutions. This division will take on the remaining pension obligations and liabilities - it has been positive in most of its units over the past few years, unlike handsets, and generated a combined $11.1bn in 2009.

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