With $2.5bn of unspent Nortel auction cash seemingly burning a hole in its pockets and the market overall critical of its quirky auction performance, Google has moved quickly to start talks with InterDigital, known in the trade as a mini-Qualcomm. Impressive. InterDigital has been talking up its portfolio since the Nortel auction.
And with a reported and truly whopping $76bn of cash, Apple is reportedly today going head to head with Google for InterDigital. Wow! this is hotting up.
According to reports this afternoon:
InterDigital (NASDAQ:IDCC) can now count both Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) among its suitors. The two tech giants are considering bidding for the company and its patent portfolio. InterDigital has designed and developed many digital cellular wireless products and networks, and owns about 1,300 U.S. and 7,500 non-U.S. patents related to wireless communications technologies. The patents would save Google and Apple billions of dollars royalties for Android and iPhone. InterDigital has a market value of $3.1 billion.
I do like this spot from Florian Muller on Twitter of an article from BusinessInsider which quotes a new way of valuing at least telecoms based businesses, on a per phone basis across the portfolio. Weird science:
“It is reportedly bidding on Interdigital, a mobile tech company with ~18,000 patents (awarded or pending). Jefferies analyst Peter Misek thinks Interdigital’s patent portfolio could be worth $3-$10 per iPhone, or $3 billion to $10 billion overall.”
The fun supposedly continues. Might need to blog again about who will win this spat!