updated 12:15 pm EDT, Fri March 27, 2009
NVIDIA to buy VIA shares
NVIDIA is today claimed to be in talks with Taiwanese chipmaker VIA Technologies to buy a significant amount of shares from the company in hopes of getting a significant stake in its business. VIA is said planning on selling 300 million new shares by way of a private placement, each priced at between the equivalent of about $0.27 to $0.35. Nothing is official and is likely to remain so until all possible candidates for shares are named after a June 19th shareholder meeting. NVIDIA is maintaining complete silence on the subject.
The exact motive is unclear, though NVIDIA has increasingly warmed to VIA as an alternative to depending on Intel for netbook-class processors. Santa Clara-based NVIDIA has said it plans to launch Ion for VIA Nano chips and would let PC designers build whole systems with only the x86 architecture license tying either company back to Intel. NVIDIA is currently embroiled in a dispute with Intel where the former has accused Intel of punishing a better rival for significantly outperforming its products.
In related news, VIA announced it plans to invest a further equivalent of approximately $26.25 million into subsidiary VIA Optical Solution, which manufactures optical storage devices.