Google-owned Motorola will acquire Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion
Updated March 30, 2019 12:01:23Google will purchase Motorola Mobility, the parent company of the Moto brand, for an undisclosed sum, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.
The acquisition will allow Google to tap into a global market for smartphones that includes Motorola’s Nexus line, which includes the Moto X smartphone, which is powered by Google’s Android operating system.
The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2018, according to the Journal, citing people familiar with the matter.
Google declined to comment.
Google is a pioneer in mobile software and services, including Android, which launched in 2006.
The company has been pursuing a “Google Mobile” strategy to focus on hardware, in part by releasing products in the Google Play store, but also by licensing the Moto name to partners like Motorola Mobility and Google Home.
Google’s strategy has not been as successful with its smartphone business, though, with the company losing $1.6 billion on its smartphone licensing business in 2016, according the Journal.
Google bought Motorola Mobility in 2014 for $5.4 billion, and the two companies have remained friends, despite Google’s recent troubles with Google’s Pixel smartphones.
In the year since the acquisition, Motorola has been working to develop the next-generation Moto X and Moto Z phones, as well as a standalone smartphone called the Moto G4.
Google has also been working on a new version of Android that would include the Motorola branding.
Google had originally announced plans to make the Google Mobile brand available as an Android developer kit in 2020.
The Moto name would then be available to other developers.
Google announced in April 2018 that it was ending the Moto Group and creating a new brand for the brand called Google.
Google also said in September 2018 that Motorola Mobility would no longer be able to sell devices under the Motorola name.