Lenovo broadens European share through Medion buy

Medion logo

Lenovo is looking to boost its market share in western Europe, and today announced it will be acquiring German multimedia and consumer electronics firm Medion in a pair of deals totaling over $670 million. The move instantly doubles Lenovo’s market share in Germany—Europe’s largest PC market—to a 14 percent share, and brings Lenovo’s share of the broader European market to about 7.5 percent.

“This agreement represents another bold move for Lenovo to realize its long-term strategy,” said Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing, in a statement. “With their strong consumer sales, marketing, services, and retail capabilities, Medion AG’s business is perfectly aligned with our consumer growth strategy in Western Europe.”

Lenovo will be paying €13 per share for Medion, and is cutting a separate deal with Medion CEO Gerd Brachman, who has agreed to sell 40 percent of Medion’s outstanding shares to Lenovo at €13 per share, while retaining a 20 percent stake.

The Medion acquisition marks Lenovo’s biggest takeover since it bought IBM’s personal computer business back in 2005 for about $1.75 billion. It also mark’s a success in Lenovo’s long-standing effort to get deeper into the European market; back in 2007, Lenovo was keen to acquire Packard-Bell—which, believe it or not, was still something of a force in the European PC market. However, the move was thwarted by Acer’s sly acquisition of Gateway, which not only gave Acer a significant channel into the North American computer market but also gave it right of refusal on any Packard-Bell acquisition deal—and, of course, Acer didn’t let Lenovo buy the company.

In addition to a larger share of the European computer market, Lenovo’s acquisition of Medion also gives it a hand in the company’s multimedia and mobile businesses. Medion is based in Essen, and has about 1,000 employees.

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