Apple's fairy-tale like business history is impressive to say the least; from boom to bust to resurgence and now ubiquity, the company is an undeniable juggernaut in the sphere of personal computing and technology. Posting gain after gain, with dollars rolling in and investors continuing to have the sense to invest in the monumental company, Apple's self paved yellow brick road looks as if it will continue, well beyond the sunset.
Steve Jobs' company is no stranger to a good old acquisition. With the purchase of PA Semi, Intrinsity and numourous design houses, Apple's expansion to suit their needs is by no means shy. With $51 billion in free cash and both long and short term securities, Apple is in a very comfortable position to begin looking into “strategic opportunities," as revealed in a conference call last week.
Business experts have been speculating about possible Apple aquisitions, basing their claims on various presumed necessities within the company. Bill Kreher, of Edward Jones, explains that Apple "typically only make very small acquisitions and focus on organic growth and product development," and believes that Apple may move from component suppliers over to those that are providers of content.
Both Netflix and EA are said to be potential acquisitions for the company, and even a recent Jobs/Zuckerberg dinner date is under scrutiny. Facebook would be the only real social networking step for Apple to take. With Ping being a generally accepted flop, and Apple's current Facetime drive, Facebook/time integeration would only be smart of the company; adding 500 million more potential iTunes customers it their current 160m and integrating communication by streamining into a single platform would be brilliant.
Also interesting is Barron Magazine's speculation that Apple could take over Adobe, Sony or Walt Disney with their spare cash. CVG has pointed out that Sony's market cap, is around $40 billion. This is well within Apple's purchasing range, although the benefits may be arguable and indiscrete.
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