HTC makes two acquisitions in the UK as it moves to bolster its content and services proposition

In a bid to bolster its operations in the UK, HTC made two acquisitions in the UK. The firm said the two investments will bolster its content and services proposition. HTC is to acquire a 100 per cent stake in Saffron Media Group, which trades as Saffron Digital, for £30 million.

Saffron Digital is a global leader in digital multimedia delivery, with its technology integrated into devices and services from companies such as HTC, Samsung, LG, Paramount Digital Entertainment, Sony Ericsson, T-Mobile and Nokia. Under the terms of the investment, Saffron will continue to offer its technology to third-party partners.

HTC is Taiwan's leading smartphone maker. HTC is also investing US$40 million in Onlive, a pioneer of on-demand, instant-play video game services, delivering real-time interactive experiences and rich media through the internet. In December 2010, Onlive announced availability of a mobile app for Apple’s iPad, with a “beta” version showcased for Android.

Analysts have noted that while HTC has performed well with its device proposition, it will need to bolster its content strategy in order to compete with rivals such as Apple and RIM. The acquisitions will also help it in its attempts to differentiate devices from rival products built on the same platform, from competitors such as Motorola, Samsung and Sony Ericsson. Late last year, it was reported that HTC was planning to launch its own app and content store.

HTC CEO, Peter Chou, in a statement said the firm’s ability to deliver optimized content in the future will be a key asset as content becomes more and more complex and localized. Chou reiterated his excitement, noting that working with Saffron will enable the Taiwan based firm increase its global service delivery capabilities and expertise.

HTC makes handsets for a number of leading US companies and is the manufacturer of the Nexus One, unveiled by Apple rival Google last year.

Saffron Digital, which also has offices in Beverly Hills, Rome and Dubai, was formed in 2006 and took £2m in funding in 2007 from investors including Beringea, NewSmith Capital and Duet Asset Management. HTC is becoming more aggressive in seeking out strategic partners and acquisition targets.

HTC Corp boasts of producing powerful handsets that continually push the boundaries of innovation to provide true mobile freedom.

9 Feb 2011.