Imagination Tech for sale amid Apple patent row

Imagination Technologies, which lost about 70% of its stock market value after its largest customer Apple said it planned to stop using Imagination’s intellectual property in its new products, has put itself up for sale.

Apple announced in April that it was developing its own graphics chips and would no longer use Imagination’s processing designs in 15 months to two years time.

Analysts said that potential buyers of UK-based Imagination Technologies could include Qualcomm, Mediatek, Intel and several companies in China — and perhaps even Apple itself.

“Imagination Technologies announces that over the last few weeks it has received interest from a number of parties for a potential acquisition of the whole group,” the company said.

“The board of Imagination has therefore decided to initiate a formal sale process for the group and is engaged in preliminary discussions with potential bidders.”

Imagination added: “Further to the announcement on 4 May 2017, Imagination remains in dispute with Apple Inc.”

At the time of Apple’s announcement in April, Imagination said: “Apple has not presented any evidence to substantiate its assertion that it will no longer require Imagination’s technology, without violating Imagination’s patents, intellectual property and confidential information.”

On May 4, Imagination said it had “commenced a dispute resolution procedure” with Apple after failing to resolve the licence and royalty standoff.

“Imagination has been unable to make satisfactory progress with Apple to date regarding alternative commercial arrangements for the current licence and royalty agreement,” said Imagination on May 4.