Mobile manufacturer HTC has shown interest in buying Nokia’s Chennai-based plant. In an interview with Economic Times, HTC CFO Chialin Chang reflected the company’s interest in purchasing the Sriperumbudur factory, if it is up for sale.
If the plant is able to do good for the consumers, the Taiwanese giant is interested to look further into it. "I am happy to look into it, because the overall preparation, exploration hinges upon if it will serve consumers better. If that (plant) will do that (service consumers better), then we would be happy to look further into it," said Chang.
Nokia is facing several tax disputes over this factory with Indian government. The Finnish manufacturer has recently downsized the factory’s production and moved several of its equipment to its other factories located at Vietnam and China. Uncertain about their future, the employees seek solution from management.
Nokia’s $7.2 billion acquisition deal with Microsoft is expected to close on this Friday, but the fate of the factory is still uncertain. According to one ET source, Microsoft isn't really bothered about this plant. "It makes no sense for Microsoft to keep the factory as they can easily outsource the entire production to China, just like Apple does, and successfully at that", the person said.
If the Chennai factory doesn’t become part of the acquisition, it could change the original terms of the deal.
Update: "HTC would like to clarify that the company has no intention of purchasing the plant. From a business perspective, we continually review opportunities to strategically invest and we will continue to do so in the future. It's unfortunate that Mr. Chang's comments were taken out of context during the interview." Apparently, Chang was misquoted and HTC has no intention to take the factory.