HTC was worth $33.9 billion back in 2011, and the company is now worth only $2 billion. I believe this puts things into perspective, and gives you an idea how many problems HTC is having at the moment. HTC has announced a number of high-end devices this year, including their current global flagship, the One M9, and a number of other ones: One M9+, One E9+ and Butterfly 3. It remains to be seen if these handsets will be able to help the company turn things around by the end of the year, but that’s highly unlikely. The company has been having a hard time turning a profit for a long time now, and the rumors regarding the possible acquisition by a third-party are in full motion.
The latest such rumor came from Asus’ camp, the company’s chairman, Johnny Shin. Mr. Shin has said that Asus is actually thinking about acquiring HTC, and this Taiwan-based smartphone OEM is not the only interested party. A number of other companies have been mentioned, and it remains to be seen if any of them actually make a move this time around. HTC is still standing firm, and are not considering such options, but they might be forced soon if they don’t manage to turn profit regularly. The company’s worth is constantly dropping, which makes the acquisition option a rather viable option for HTC.
It is still possible that HTC won’t be purchased by Asus, or anyone else for that matter, but what if that happens? Would HTC benefit from such a deal? Every time I see rumors like that I can’t help but think of Motorola Mobility, and how Lenovo purchased that company from Google. In that particular example, Lenovo didn’t mess around with Motorola’s business, at least not thus far. Motorola is still the same company, it’s only available in more areas around the world, including Lenovo’s homeland, China.
That being said, would Asus be able to help HTC? Well, it all depends on what the company plans to do with HTC, of course. For the sake of this argument, let’s assume that they intend to keep HTC a company, and not just take it over and re-brand it, like Microsoft did with Nokia. HTC is still a very recognizable brand, and they just need to alter some things in their business, at least in my humble opinion. HTC’s marketing has been really bad for a long time now, and they need to improve in that area significantly if the intend to make something happen. In order to do that, they need resources, and Asus can definitely help in that area.
Marketing is only one area in which HTC needs to improve, of course. The company has been all over the place when it comes to device releases, from releasing overpriced low and mid-range phones, to releasing way too many high-end offerings which have limited availability (Asia exclusives). HTC will hardly be able to alter all that considering the current state of the company, but an another company like Asus might help them do that. HTC is a well-known brand around the world, and with the proper changes in their business, who knows… perhaps we’ll be able to see the real HTC again.