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Acer-Gateway deal is valued at $710 million USD

There is big news out of the computer world today. Acer today announced that it has reached a definitive agreement to purchase U.S.-based Gateway, Inc. Gateway is currently ranked as the fourth largest PC manufacturer in the U.S. with shipments of over 20 million PCs per year.

The acquisition is estimated to be valued at $710 million USD ($1.90 per share) and is expected to be finalized in December 2007.

"This strategic transaction is an important milestone in Acer's long history" said Acer chairman J.T. Wang. "The acquisition of Gateway and its strong brand immediately completes Acer's global footprint, by strengthening our US presence. This will be an excellent addition to Acer's already strong positions in Europe and Asia.  Upon acquiring Gateway, we will further solidify our position as number three PC vendor globally."

"Joining with Acer will enable us to bring even more value to the consumer segments we serve and capitalize on Acer's highly regarded supply chain operations and global reach to expand the scope of the Gateway and eMachines brands around the world," remarked Gateway CEO Ed Coleman.  "Acer has made impressive strides in the global PC market and the board and I welcome this merger."

From statements made by representatives for both companies, it appears that the eMachines brand -- which Gateway acquired 2004 for roughly $262 million USD -- and Gateway brand will live on under Acer's massive wings. The retention of the brands also means that Gateway will likely continue to flaunt its "cow heritage" much like the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain.

Almost exactly one year ago, it was reported that John Hui offered $450 million USD to purchase Gateway's retail division. The bid, however, was never accepted by Gateway. "I am very disappointed that Gateway has chosen not to constructively engage in discussions with me and my advisors on the proposal that I sent to you on Aug. 3," said Hui in August, 2006. "I believe that management and the board need to adopt a sense of urgency to address Gateway's problems."

The news of Acer’s acquisition comes just weeks after Gateway’s announcement that it would enter the Chinese PC market with desktop and notebook computers.

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is it just me...
By porkpie on 8/27/2007 10:06:13 AM , Rating: 1
or is Acer the worst of the "well known" PC brands?

RE: is it just me...
By stromgald on 8/27/2007 12:04:28 PM , Rating: 1
Yeah, this is a sad end to a fairly reputable computer brand. I think Gateway tried to be too much. They started out similar to Dell, but tried to maintain an Apple-esque exclusivity to their brand. And now, they're being bought out by one of the most shunned large name brands out there.

I have heard that Acer has been improving, but I haven't worked up the courage to get anything of theirs yet.

RE: is it just me...
By Chadder007 on 8/27/2007 12:57:58 PM , Rating: 1
They do make some great LCD monitors. We use them a lot here at my work and they have been great. Just don't have any experience with their PCs.

RE: is it just me...
By FITCamaro on 8/27/07, Rating: -1
RE: is it just me...
By Samus on 8/27/07, Rating: -1
RE: is it just me...
By Misty Dingos on 8/27/2007 1:00:02 PM , Rating: 2
First PC I bought was an Acer full tower Pentium 90mhz back in 95. I have built all the rest of my desktops since then but I could not complain about that PC. Where they went from 1995 I don't know. But anything has got to be better for Gateway than bottom feeding in the PC market. Perhaps two bottom feeders can make one middle of the road company?

RE: is it just me...
By xeltor on 8/27/2007 1:13:34 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not quite sure where you guys are coming from. I have always had good experiences with acer and poor ones with gateway. Though of all the computer manufacturers Dell has to be the one I've had the most troubles with.

RE: is it just me...
By Vanilla Thunder on 8/27/2007 3:36:43 PM , Rating: 2
I bought an Acer desktop for my gf a couple weeks ago. She didn't need anything high-end, just something to surf the web, play some music/dvd's, and do some home photo editing/printing. (And decent enough for me to load some last gen games onto.) I ended up with an AMD X24800+, 2 GB of DDR2, a 500GB HD, DVD-RW, 13 in 1 card reader, canon photo printer, and a 19" 5ms, 2000:1, widescreen monitor. Also included were mouse/kybd/spkrs and a copy of Vista Home Premium. All of this for around $650. Granted, there is no way you would mistake this for a premium system (the case and keyboard are prime examples) it is more than enough machine for the money from a B&M store. Compared to similarly priced HP's and Dells, you can't touch it. But to be honest, I've owned both, and rather than deal with them again, I thought I would give the Acer a run for it's money. So far, so good. Based on the short experience I've had with this one, I'd give them my money again. BTW, the monitor is SWEET.


RE: is it just me...
By AmbroseAthan on 8/27/2007 1:27:20 PM , Rating: 3
To add some support to Acer... I bought an Acer Ferrari 3200 a few years back, and it was great. Harddrive died on after a while (my Dell desktops' have died multiple times) and Acer overnighted me a new hardrive with another box to send my old one back in; this was after spending only 10 minutes on the phone with an English speaking American in Texas.

I also now have a 24" Acer WUXGA screen that I love to no end.

RE: is it just me...
By Le Québécois on 8/27/2007 3:04:08 PM , Rating: 2
Have you ever opened the case of a well known brand computer?

I did so with almost every brand on the market, except for Dell, and Acer computers were always build with what seems to be quality hardware. I can't say the same for other brands like HP for example.

While I would never buy one of those for myself I do recommend them for person that don't know a thing about computers and want to buy a computer at a big store like BestBuy for example.

RE: is it just me...
By TomZ on 8/27/07, Rating: -1
RE: is it just me...
By Le Québécois on 8/27/2007 7:40:38 PM , Rating: 2
Well, I did study in Electric engineering so yes I can in fact see when some components are poorly build.

But more to the point, if you know which brand can be trusted, what are their good and bad products and that you can see them in a computer like an Acer for example. I do thing it's more trust worthy then when you don't recognize the hardware inside or worst, when you know it's a really bad product or brand.

With that in mind, I can say that I trust Acer more than any pre-build computer on the the market(except for Dell because like I said in my previous post, I never opened one of their computer).

RE: is it just me...
By TomZ on 8/28/2007 12:43:24 AM , Rating: 2
Well, I did study in Electric engineering so yes I can in fact see when some components are poorly build.

Really, so you are trained to spot a failed diode, solder bridge underneath a BGA, a broken trace in an internal layer of a PCB?

Sorry, I'm just having a little fun at your expense. :o)

Quality is an attribute of a process, not of a product. I agree with you that quality tends to be somewhat consistent within a brand, however, these days its more of a crap shoot. A given brand may have a number of ODMs/CMs scattered around the globe, each of which with different quality characteristics.

RE: is it just me...
By glitchc on 8/28/2007 1:16:41 AM , Rating: 2
Cut the guy a break here. It's not like Acer or Dell or anybody else builds their own motherboards from scratch. They're usually bought from third-party OEMs. Hence, the quality of the component depends on the reputation of the OEM, not necessarily the reputation of the assembler. A lot of the chipsets, ex. Centrino, are proprietary and come directly from Intel anyhow.

For the record, I do own an Acer laptop. Bought refurb, came with a one-year warranty from Acer. Has given me excellent service without a hitch for over a year now. The HPs on the other hand, I've seen fall apart in my friends' hands.

RE: is it just me...
By Le Québécois on 8/28/2007 1:47:19 AM , Rating: 2
Really, so you are trained to spot a failed diode, solder bridge underneath a BGA, a broken trace in an internal layer of a PCB?

Well, I used to be. In fact it was the topic for one of my technical course. How to spot failing electronics pieces and be able to precisely diagnose why a component was defect. But believe me, it's really a big waste of time since it's a lot cheaper to just change the damn component, not fix it.

But it was a long time ago and I usually don't bring a good voltmeter and oscilloscope with me when I go computer shopping :P .

Sorry, I'm just having a little fun at your expense. :o)

So we're both having fun now!

I'm just entertaining you when I answer those questions because we both know that my knowledge in engineering isn't really useful when you just try to find a good computer for your grand-mother ;). In fact I know a lot of Electric engineers that don't know much on computer beside how to start their computers.

RE: is it just me...
By Belard on 8/27/2007 4:04:14 PM , Rating: 2
"or is Acer the worst of the "well known" PC brands?"

Acer has been in business for a very long time, before they left the USA Retail market, they were a higher-end PC company. When they returned a year or so ago, they aimed for the low-price market.

I've helped people buy Acer computers, they are easy to convert to XP since ACER has easy access drivers of both XP & Vista available. When I worked on the PC, the metal was a tad cheaper than HP,Dell etc - but the space and drive options were better. The motherboard is fine. The other parts like CPU, HDs, RAM and optical drives are the same stuff you find in any quality computer.

If you're buying a NAME-BRAND computer - they are ALL THE SAME... the same level of junk... as I always say. Get whatever is the best deal and "looks" that you like. And since they are the same, spending more than $600 on a Name-brand PC is a waste of money. Only true-high end PCs really make use of faster CPUs. You can blow $1200 on an HP top-end system and it'll have slow 533mhz RAM and maybe a 7600gs card (usually worse).

Acer has been making parts for other companies for decades. They have always been bigger than Gateway (I think).

RE: is it just me...
By spluurfg on 8/27/2007 5:08:58 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah... Acer believe it or not is/was the parent company of Ali (Acer Labs Inc) and AOpen (Acer Open), as well as BenQ (the mobile division was sold off to Siemens). They do a lot of peripherals and I believe OEM for 3rd parties. They're also very big in Taiwan, one of the large computer manufacturers out there, I believe.

I also have personal experience with several Acer notebooks, including tablets, all of which were of acceptable quality.

Note that pretty much every Tier1 manufacturer out there will contract the big component makers (often many different ones) in Taiwan to manufacture their components... Asus being the largest, currently used by Dell and many others I am sure.

RE: is it just me...
By Mitch101 on 8/27/2007 5:02:21 PM , Rating: 2
Acer in the last couple of years has made a tremendous comeback in quality. I think you are referring to ACER of about 15 years ago when cases used to bend just pressing the power button but they are much better now.

ACER I seriously trust again and interestingly enough watch out for Westinghouse as becoming a bigger player in the computer field. Winds are changing.

RE: is it just me...
By BillyBatson on 8/28/2007 6:03:37 AM , Rating: 1
From what I have known they were always very good. I remember in the pentium MMX days up until Pentrium 2 they were pretty big and pretty high end, back when you could still find NEC and Packard Bell desktops in places like Sears and Circuit City. They left the US and when they came back a short time ago they came back aiming for more low cost business but the quality goes along with the price (look at dell, dell $600 range is cheap, XPS bumps you to better quality (which was not evident from my m1330), and alienware bumps you up further but also reflects in the price).

Last I heard Acer was big in Europe?

RE: is it just me...
By selfexiled on 8/29/2007 12:59:07 PM , Rating: 2
I remember having a good experience before back around 1996. I had a 133 Pentium with the 32 MB of EDO RAM. That Acer lasted pretty well, and survived the windows 98 SE upgrade. Looking back I'm fairly impressed that they had a nearly full range of accessories and products at the time (this was before Dell rose to prominence).

I know they left the market some time after that...but everyone I know who has bought an Acer notebook recently has had a fairly good experience. I was convinced that they hold a lower market share due to lack of name recognition rather than quality issues.

In fact, until these comments I was fairly sure that Acer had mainly Mid-Range systems and less of the "craputer" status that E-Machines/Compaq/Gateway held in their hey-days.

PS can anyone attest to the lack of "bloat-ware" in Acer systems? Compared to HP system (which contains an insane amount, esp in laptops)

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