HTC (HTCKF.OB) has sold back the 25% stake it held in Beats Electronics for $265M, DealBook reports, and will reap a pre-tax profit of $85M. HTC sold the other 25% it held back in 2012 for $150M. The move comes in conjunction with a $500M investment in Beats by Carlyle that values the company at more than $1B.
Beats also repaid a $150M note to HTC. The beleaguered phone manufacturer has seen revenue, earnings, and its stock slide, and the sale is aimed at bolstering its balance sheet.
By severing ties with HTC, Beats will be better positioned to determine its own fate (the company develops speakers and audio systems for HTC phones), DealBook comments. HTC retained licensing rights when it sold the first part of its stake in 2012, but it is an open question whether this transaction has the same provisions.