PC vendor Acer has purchased cloud technology company iGware for $320 million, plus another $75 million for performance-based earn-out.
The Silicon Valley firm produces ‘cloud-based device ecosystems, virtual consoles and personal cloud’ – essentially facilitating cloud computing and storage. It currently works with high profile clients like Nintendo.
After the buyout, the company’s resources will be leveraged towards providing the vendor with its own dedicated cloud division called Acer Cloud. iGware’s legal name will be changed to Acer Cloud Technology Company.
For what is almost exclusively a hardware firm, this represents not only huge investment, but a dramatic diversification of its business strategy.
It’s not clear exactly what Acer will have the firm produce, but unifying tablets, PCs and smartphones appears to be a key thrust. The corporate rhetoric also refers to the deal as a ‘mid to long-term investment’ in cloud, which could imply a tangible product won’t appear anytime soon.
JT Wang, Acer Chairman and CEO, said: “iGware offers expertise in cloud technology software design, with services already deployed on large scale and long-term basis. As a mid- to long-term investment objective, the valuable core technology and capabilities will help create uniqueness for the Acer brand, and support a vast number of our users based on open platform.”
“The goal of Acer Cloud is to allow our users enjoy and manage all their ICT devices, contents and resources with ease, by integrating all Acer products including PCs, tablets and smart handheld devices within a safe and secure environment.”