Icahn Wins: Motorola Will Spin Off Mobile Unit

Company says it will spin off foundering mobile unit that's lost $1.2 billion
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted Mar 26, 2008 8:13 AM CDT
Financier Carl Icahn arrives at last year's Motorola annual meeting.   (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
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(Newser) – Motorola blinked in its showdown with billionaire investor Carl Icahn, announcing this morning it will spin off the foundering mobile-device division that lost $1.2 billion last year and has seen its share of the mobile phone market shrink from 22% to 12%, reports Bloomberg. Moto’s stock rose 6.6% on the news before the markets opened, after losing 45% in the past year.

Icahn—who owns 6.3% of Motorola—has pushed for the company to sell or spin off the division and has filed a lawsuit and launched a proxy battle to gain control of the board in an effort to force the company to act. Moto has lost dramatic ground to competitors like Apple and Nokie in a business it created 25 years ago.