Apple mulled gobbling its Brit GPU designers – but didn't like the taste

Lack of Imagination

Apple was considering buying Imagination Technologies – designers of the PowerVR graphics processors in its iPhones and iPads – but walked away from the deal.

In a statement today via Imagination and the London Stock Exchange, the Cupertino giant said: "From time to time, Apple talks with companies about potential acquisitions. We had some discussions with Imagination, but we do not plan to make an offer for the company at this time."

This follows a week or so of speculation and whispers that Apple was going to snap up the UK-based chip design company, which this month laid off a fifth of its employees to avoid another loss-making year. Its long-serving CEO hit the eject button the other month, too.

Imagination's business model is like ARM's in that it licenses its GPU and CPU core designs to chip makers that in turn churn out components for product manufacturers. Imagination's PowerVR graphics processor cores are used in Apple iPhones and iPads, Samsung smartphones and tablets, the handheld Sony Playstation Vita, and various system-on-chips.

It was thought to be an obvious acquisition target for moneybags Apple. Perhaps Imagination's baggage – like its Pure consumer electronics biz – was a turn off for the California giant. Apple owns a 10 per cent stake in Imagination.

Imagination's stock price rose 4.37 per cent in today's trading to 193p ($2.74) a pop. ®


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