Sat, Jul 02, 2005 - Page 10 News List

Motorola denies selling Chinese handset business


Motorola Inc, the world's second-biggest handset maker, denied reports it will sell its handset business in Tianjin, China, to a unit of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密).

"We are selling an idle building in Tianjin and it's just a real estate transaction," said Mary Lamb, a spokeswoman for Motorola Asia Pacific Ltd.

Earlier reports about a sale of the handset business are "completely inaccurate," she said.

Foxconn International Holdings Ltd (富士康), a unit of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co, plans to buy Motorola's handset business in Tianjin, China Business News reported on Wednesday, citing unidentified Hong Kong investors.

Illinois-based Motorola is in talks to sell a factory building in Tianjin after it moved the operations at the plant, which made batteries used in cellphones and automotive parts, to another facility, Lamb said.

She declined to name the potential buyers.

Motorola, which sold more mobile phones in China than any other company from 1999 to 2001, saw its market share fall to 12.1 percent last year, putting it in second place behind Nokia, the world's No.1 handset maker, according to market researcher Gartner Inc.

Motorola's market share was about 20 percent in 2002.

China, the world's largest mobile-phone market by users, had 358.5 million subscribers at the end of May, 19 percent more than a year earlier.

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