Acer Inc (宏碁) yesterday announced plans to purchase a 15.6 percent stake in PChomePay Inc (支付連), as the world’s fourth-largest PC maker branches out into the third-party payment business as part of its diversification strategy.
Acer is to spend NT$70 million (US$2.32 million) to acquire 7 million shares of PChomePay, a subsidiary of e-commerce Web site PChome Online Inc (網絡家庭), boosting PChomePay’s capitalization to NT$450 million.
After the deal is completed, Acer will become PChomePay’s largest shareholder.
PChome Online holds 70 percent of PChomePay’s shares, along with subsidiaries PChome Store Inc (商店街市集) and Ruten.com (露天拍賣).
“Acer is going beyond hardware-based thinking,” company chairman Stan Shih (施振榮) told a press conference. “Investing in e-commerce and our cloud technology is part of Acer’s ‘hardware plus software plus services’ transformation.”
Shih was referring to the computer maker’s announcement last month that it is aiming to remake itself into a company specializing in hardware, software and services after it carried out a management reshuffle in November last year.
Through the investment in PChomePay, Acer will be able to participate in PChomePay’s third-party payment service, which offers an e-commerce transaction platform to online shoppers and store owners, the PC brand said.
Shih said he expects the cooperation between Acer and PChome Group to generate benefits for both sides.
In a report released last month, THE Market Intelligence and Consulting Institute (MIC, 資策會) forecast that Taiwan’s annual e-commerce transactions would exceed NT$1 trillion as early as 2015, which would signify a 51.51 percent surge from the NT$660 billion posted in 2012.
Last month, the Ministry of Economic Affairs submitted to the Cabinet a draft bill aiming to facilitate bids by local companies to offer third-party payment services in Taiwan.