HTC has partnered with Beats for quite a while, slapping their logo onto HTC phones for years. HTC has integrated various levels of Beats software, whether it be a poor quality software equalizer that only works in the stock music app or a more refined (but still software) equalizer that can work for any audio source. HTC even purchased a 50.1 percent stake of the company for $300 million.
However, the Beats partnership has slowly been going downhill. Last year, Beats spent $150 million to buy back half of HTC’s stake in the company. And it seems that now Beats wants to sever the partnership altogether. The Wall Street Journal reports that “people familiar with the matter” say that Beats is looking for a new investor to replace HTC. This probably stems from HTC’s low profits and lack of big growth.
While HTC struggles, Beats has only been growing. Beats revenue was about $1 billion in 2012, up from $200 million in 2010. It looks like the people behind Beats may think they need a new investor who will support growth. While not confirmed, we’ll see where this partnership heads. Do you think HTC will suffer without Beats? Leave a comment!