Samsung Said to Be in Talks to Sell Liquavista to AmazonJungah Lee
Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s largest flat-panel maker, is trying to sell Dutch subsidiary Liquavista BV to Amazon.com Inc., according to a person familiar with the matter.
Samsung is seeking a sale of the Eindhoven, Netherlands-based maker of electronic-reader display technology for less than $100 million, said the person, who declined to be identified because the discussions are private. Samsung, based in Suwon, South Korea, acquired Liquavista in 2011.
Liquavista, founded in 2006, specializes in a type of display technology known as electrowetting, mostly used in electronic readers, a shrinking market that’s dominated by Amazon’s Kindle devices. Samsung has followed a shift in consumer preference to smartphones and tablets, which mainly use liquid-crystal displays, or LCDs.
Shipments of e-book readers will decline 27 percent to 10.9 million units in 2013, according to researcher IHS Inc. By 2016, IHS expects 7.1 million e-readers to ship, less than a third of the peak volume seen in 2011.
Samsung is considering a sale of the business after the acquisition didn’t meet its expectations, the person said.
“We are currently reviewing many plans, including the sale, but nothing has been confirmed yet,” Chenny Kim, a spokeswoman for Samsung, said by phone today.
Ty Rogers, a spokesman for Seattle-based Amazon, declined to comment.