Engadget breaks down Palm’s buyout by HP as detailed in its SEC statement on the matter with some very interesting little tidbits.  It breaks down like this:

  • In February, Palm realized it needed outside help.  Options included a buyout or selloff of assets (patents) or licensing of WebOS
  • 16 companies were targeted and contacted about a buyout or other options.  In March, Palm decided that a full buyout was the best option 
  • HP and two others wanted to buy the company.  Two more made offers to buy patents/license WebOS.
  • It eventually came down to HP and ‘Company C’ who “told Palm it wasn’t raising its acquisition offer [which was only 20 cents/share below HP], but offered to buy patents and take a nonexclusive license to webOS for $800 million.”
  • HP and Palm completed the deal from April 24-28th when it was announced.

Company C sounds a lot like HTC to me.  Remember that the HP deal was announced on the 28th but was probably finalized earlier.  

Don’t forget HTC sold its soul to the devil made a patent sharing deal with Microsoft on April 27.  That sounds like Plan B.  Buying Palm was probably Plan A in its patent battle against Apple but it probably became too expensive.

Other payers involved could have been Dell, Motorola, Lenovo, Nokia and a few others, including Apple.

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