Google announced the completion of its $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola. Chief Executive Larry Page, a founder of Google, announced the news, saying, “Motorola is a great American tech company that has driven the mobile revolution, with a track record of over 80 years of innovation, including the creation of the first cellphone. We all remember Motorola’s StarTAC, which at the time seemed tiny and showed the real potential of these devices. And as a company who made a big, early bet on Android, Motorola has become an incredibly valuable partner to Google.”
The closing of the deal comes after almost a year of clearing regulatory hurdles and answering inquiries from authorities. All of the necessary regulatory approvals had been received and Google had been waiting for Chinese regulators to sign off on the purchase. Google first announced its bid to buy Motorola Mobility last August.
Motorola Mobility is the branch of Motorola that builds smartphones, tablets, and set-top boxes. Motorola Mobility also makes set-top boxes, leading some to wonder if Google was also interested in reentering the television business after its first attempt, Google TV, failed miserably.
Roger Entner, analyst and founder of Recon Analytics, said, “Google is salivating about getting into the TV advertising business. And Motorola already dominates the home. Trading a free service – Internet on your TV – for your TV viewing habits which they can combine with your Web browsing habits is the holy grail of targeting.”
Google stressed that it was Motorola’s rich trove of patents that most interested the company in the purchase. The large number of patents held by Motorola would help Google fend off rivals, like Apple and Microsoft, in the legal arena.
Sanjay Jha, the chief executive of Motorola Mobility, will step down. Mr. Page did not specify whether additional structural changes would happen under the new leadership at Motorola Mobility.