They Weren’t Kidding: Samsung Bids for SanDisk

Defying skeptics who had warned that a deal would face significant hurdles, Samsung this afternoon announced that it has offered to buy SanDisk for $26 a share in cash. While Samsung had previously said it might be interested in buying SanDisk, many on the Street were convinced that Samsung was more interested in improving its negotiating position on a renewed license agreement over NAND-related patents than actually buying the company. But today the skeptics on the potential for such a deal–and I count myself among them–have been proven incorrect.

This is clearly not a friendly deal. The Samsung announcement notes it is “reiterating” its proposal to acquire Samsung, and includes a lengthy letter to SanDisk’s management that makes it clear that the two companies had been talking for months, but that SanDisk had wanted a higher price. The hostile nature of the offer makes the potential regulatory obstacles to the deal–the combination would own a majority of the global NAND flash production capacity–all the more daunting.

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