Ericsson Seeks Buyer for Microelectronics Division

August 20, 2001 by Jeff Shepard

Ericsson (Stockholm, Sweden) is seeking a buyer for its microelectronics unit, according to company sources.

"We are constantly reviewing our activities in order to find the most efficient way of allocating resources. We are looking at various possibilities like partnerships and divestments," Ericsson spokeswoman Ase Lindskog stated. "That is part of our strategy of focusing on our core business." Lindskog declined to comment specifically on microelectronics.

The Financial Times reported on August 20th that Ericsson had appointed investment bank Merrill Lynch to advise it on the sale of the microelectronics unit, in a deal that could value the division at between $1.0 and $2.0 billion. However, Lindskog stated, "We never comment which investment banks we use."

Ericsson has also announced changes in its management structure aimed at helping the company face an industry-wide slowdown related to the slide in demand for mobile systems equipment and handsets. Additionally, the company plans on cutting more than 10,000 jobs.