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Gigabyte and ASUS shake on the deal - Image courtesy HKEPC
Asustek and Gigabyte have just agreed to a major combined arms strategy

So it's not as big of news as the recent AMD and ATI merger, but cross-town Taipei rivals Asustek and Gigabyte have just announced a major joint venture between the two companies.  The new joint venture will effectively let Gigabyte use Asustek facilities for manufacturing of "Gigabyte" branded video cards and motherboards. 

Gigabyte will own a 51% stake in the company, with Asustek picking up the other 49%.  HKEPC (English) reports the deal is valued at approximately $244M USD, and that the new joint venture will become official January 1, 2007.  Neither company would comment on the effect of the joint venture on existing manufacturing, claiming that only the legal proceedings to start the company have been publically announced at this time.  The joint venture will also get a new name, but both companies are also tight lipped about that as well.

Analysts are already heralding the venture as a major milestone for the PC industry.  Occasional DailyTech blogger and T-Break Editor-In-Chief Abbas Jaffar Ali claimed "By combining the manufacturing capability of ASUS with the channel presence of Gigabyte, the two companies will be able to put tremendous pressure on the other Taiwan manufactures, especially Foxconn."  Peter du Preez, Universal Abit Marketing Manager, added "It all started way back when ULi and NVIDIA joined -- since then, well, it's been all about grabbing a buddy."

ASUS and Gigabyte have traditionally held the title of tier-1 motherboard manufacturers in Taiwan.  This title was also shared by Microstar International -- also a major player in motherboard, VGA and server manufacturing.  However, as PC component manufacturing began to move to mainland China, Foxconn and ECS-Tatung have risen to become the dominant component manufacturers. 

ASUS has strong manufacturing ties with Sony (Playstation 3), Apple (MacBook).  The company has also attempted to enter into the retail market with its own lineup of notebooks and digital audio players, with mixed success.  Earlier this year ASUS stated that the company would split its OEM and retail manufacturing by 2008, in an effort to give the manufacturing half of the company more room to compete with the "Big Four."

That's not to say ASUS and Gigabyte have idle competition.  ECS, currently the largest motherboard manufacturer in the world by volume, just sealed a deal to acquire Uniwill, making the new company even more massive than it was before.

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Good for Gigabyte
By tuteja1986 on 8/8/2006 8:43:28 AM , Rating: 2
This bad news for MSI me thinks :(

RE: Good for Gigabyte
By AggressorPrime on 8/8/2006 11:06:20 AM , Rating: 2
MSI makes bad boards anyway. I just hope these boards mix the OCing ability and reliability of Asus with the high power phase and futureproof of Gigabyte. We might end up seeing a Republic of Gamers motherboard with 12 phase power cooling and Kentsfield ready that might rival what DFI has to offer. That is a maybe...

RE: Good for Gigabyte
By Korvon on 8/8/2006 6:18:53 PM , Rating: 2
Not sure where you are getting this info from. Been using MIS for a few years in our tech shop, have had the lowest RMA rates out of any others we get in. Gigabyte is amonge the worst, we have dubbed them gigashyte. As for ASUS, flaky at best.

RE: Good for Gigabyte
By Korvon on 8/8/2006 8:17:23 PM , Rating: 2
Pardon the typos.

RE: Good for Gigabyte
By agent2099 on 8/8/2006 11:01:02 PM , Rating: 2
I have to disagree. At least in the mATX arena, the MSI K8NGM2 has made me a believer. After going through ASUS and Gigabyte s939 boards, the MSI turned out be a clear winner, providing better stability and more features than both ASUS and Gigabyte.

New company name
By Motley on 8/8/2006 12:26:52 PM , Rating: 2
Rumur has it the new company name will be:

*Drum roll*


RE: New company name
By supremelaw on 8/8/2006 12:47:55 PM , Rating: 3
ByteUs? LOL 8-]

Sincerely yours,
/s/ Paul Andrew Mitchell
Webmaster, Supreme Law Library

RE: New company name
By plowak on 8/8/2006 1:02:23 PM , Rating: 3
(Customer to clerk) "Gimmy one of them thar Ass-bite motherboards."

RE: New company name
By johnsonx on 8/8/2006 4:47:37 PM , Rating: 2
Since this comments system has no signature function, I'm just wondering: Do you type that in each time, cut and paste it, or do you have some sort of hot-key macro set to insert it? Something like Ctrl-Alt-StrokeMyself?

This reminds me of good ol' "Signed: Physician Thomas Stewart Von Drashek, M.D."

My two favorites!!!!
By wingless on 8/8/2006 6:07:26 PM , Rating: 2
I love ASUS and Gigabyte. Ive owned ASUS boards in the past and swear by them but Gigabytes are badass too. This is great for me because now I dont have to worry about picking one over the other! I cant wait until 2008. That will be a great year for AMD/ATI and GigAsus. Ill buy that combination for sure...

The Message...
By RunLikeHell on 8/8/2006 9:05:06 PM , Rating: 3
For old times sake...

The message is clear...Asabyte has failed.

Sorry guys/gals it had to be said.

By WeaselITB on 8/8/2006 12:14:31 PM , Rating: 3
The joint venture will also get a new name, but both companies are also tight lipped about that as well.

That's because the best that the marketing types have come up with so far has been "AsuByte" and "GigaSus."

Everybody makes bad boards
By heedoyiu on 8/9/2006 12:06:40 AM , Rating: 2
You cant say one company makes bad boards becuase i have had
good asus boards bad asus boards, good abits and bad
dfi, gigabyte its all the same story, but this should be interesting, asus has prob had the best success lately so this might be even better for them and us. Gratz

RE: Everybody makes bad boards
By SakuraChan on 9/6/2006 12:47:19 PM , Rating: 1
I choose intel motherboard ^__^ in my opinion,
the reason is maybe I'am not going to OverClock to gain performance to my system :Dhehe....
Don't take my word for it, it's my preference though ^_^,

By hightower204 on 8/8/2006 12:09:27 PM , Rating: 2
Don't feel bad for MSI. I've only had problems with their boards (ok, I had just 2 boards from them so I guess that is a bit vague point of judgement) and they don't overclock that well again. However, I agree that ASUS today isn't what ASUS were years ago - just ordered a Gigabyte for my core 2... This 'merge' is going to cost atleast one manufacturer its life - I suspect Epox would be the first one to be going down for good soon, unless they merge too.

This means what?
By MadAd on 8/8/2006 12:13:55 PM , Rating: 2
The good thing to come out of the manufacturing agreement will be a rise in the build quality of gigabyte boards however what does this mean in company terms?

According to the article, Gigabyte is getting the controlling interest (51%) but what exactly do they mean by 'joint venture'?

If the companies were merging then surely they would say that and then theyd have a new name (Asabyte, Gigasus yadda ya) but the term 'joint venture' suggests that they remain seperate companies and create a 3rd entity (Asabyte Motherboards) of which they both own part plus invest divisions of labour and manufacturing capacity... would that be an accurate assumption?

Thanks in advance to anyone that can explain the business situation clearly.

Bad news for consumers too !
By cornfedone on 8/8/06, Rating: -1
By archcommus on 8/8/2006 9:39:34 AM , Rating: 2
How did you come to form this opinion of Asus exactly?

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By Master Kenobi on 8/8/2006 9:42:18 AM , Rating: 2
Don't know what your smoking, ASUS motherboards are some of the best around.

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By sh3rules on 8/8/2006 9:53:21 AM , Rating: 2
In my limited experience with them (two mobos), Asus products have been hit-or-miss. I've used MSI and Epox which may not have been as high-performing (comparatively speaking, since the sockets were different) but their reliability and customer support was much better.

By GreenEnvt on 8/8/2006 9:53:23 AM , Rating: 3
They do have many excellent boards, but they have also put out some junk, like the A8R-MVP, and don't seem to care much about fixing it.

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By sh3rules on 8/8/2006 9:53:38 AM , Rating: 2
In my limited experience with them (two mobos), Asus products have been hit-or-miss. I've used MSI and Epox which may not have been as high-performing (comparatively speaking, since the sockets were different) but their reliability and customer support were much better.

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By RMTimeKill on 8/8/2006 11:30:57 AM , Rating: 2
Agreed, ASUS is hit and miss at best, unless you always buy from a retailer who gets first picks... ASUS is all about retailer support, doesnt care too much about individuals its seems though... Bad support...

By rrsurfer1 on 8/8/2006 3:37:30 PM , Rating: 2
Yea I had a board that died and it was impossible to get support from Asus. Some other boards I've ran from Asus were good but if you get a dud your basically screwed unless the retailer will take it back.

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By sh3rules on 8/8/2006 9:54:23 AM , Rating: 2
Sorry, I forgot there's no Edit function.

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By OrSin on 8/8/2006 9:59:47 AM , Rating: 2
The what he states it is little overboard, but actually he is right. ASUS used to eb top of the line in everything, just like sony, but both companies have fallen far. Samsung now exclipes Sony in most produces. ASUS products are just not as realible or advanced as they once were.
4 years ago SONY, ASUS and NEWEGG was great. Now they have left a bad taste in my month. Not that they are suck, but when you do somthing so well for so long then become just ok, it fell like you ahve fallen alot farther.

RE: Bad news for consumers too !
By yacoub on 8/8/2006 11:22:14 AM , Rating: 2
eh i've had mixed results with their boards. nice features, good performance, but flakey stability at times. dunno what to think about them as a whole, except that they are friendly to overclockers which is good. i still would likely look for a different brand for my next motherboard just to try something different for a change. something primarily focused on stability and not overclocking would be the goal.

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