HTC seems rather perturbed at reports suggesting that the company may be acquired by ASUS. Adding fuel to the speculative fire, ASUS Chief Financial Officer David Chang recently confessed that it's a topic that's come up internally at his company. Combined with HTC's recent smartphone slump and backwards adjusted sales forecast, it's easy to see how a merger might make sense, except that HTC adamantly denies the reports.
"We strongly deny the news. We didn't contact ASUS and will not consider the acquisition," HTC said in a news release. "As an international brand, HTC will continue to design world-class innovative smart devices through its pursuit of brilliance brand promise."
Companies typically don't even bother addressing rumors and speculation by the media, though this one hit a nerve with HTC. It likely has to do with the company's recent performance. HTC had hoped to turn around its fortunes with the One M9 and originally forecast second quarter revenue of NT$46 billion to NT$51 billion ($1.48 billion to $1.64 billion in U.S. currency), but slashed those figures by a whopping 30 percent to NT$33 billion and NT$36 billion ($1.07 billion to $1.17 billion).
HTC also cut its gross profit margin forecast and is perhaps on the defensive, which would explain why it was bothered by reports of a takeover. At the same time, it didn't seem like ASUS was particularly interested anyway.
"Our chairman has chatted about the topic internally," Chang said. "Still, the chances of an actual takeover are not big as ASUS is a company that has depended on organic growth."
With HTC and ASUS apparently on the same page, this is one rumor we can put to rest (at least for now).