Apple 'considers McLaren Technology Group takeover'

Posted September 22, 2016

According to a source quoted by the NY Times, Apple reportedly told its employees that the layoffs were part of a reset of the project: instead of seeking to design and produce a auto, the company would focus on technologies that would allow vehicles to drive autonomously, without a driver, writes the American newspaper.

The two firms have been talking for several months about plans to either have Apple make a strategic investment in the McLaren Technology Group or buy it outright, the article said. Its Applied Technologies Group supplies electronics to everyone from Formula One to NASCAR, and it has done extensive work on data center optimization.

McLaren P1
McLaren P1

A spokesman for Apple and representatives of McLaren didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.

The potential deal would see the United States technology giant fork out up to £1.5 billion for the whole firm, or make an investment for part of it, according to the Financial Times.

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A major acquisition like this wouldn't come cheap for Apple: McLaren Automotive produced 1,654 vehicles previous year which generated $584 million in revenue, Mashable writes, and the FT's sources imagines that McLaren would be valued somewhere between $1.3 and $1.96 billion. While that's a substantal chunk of change for anyone without their picture in the Forbes 400, it's comparative peanuts to the Cupertino-based Apple, which has more than $200 billion lying under the proverbial mattress. Buy a fancy vehicle. The New York Times reported on September 9 that the project was undergoing a reboot, with a shift in focus from building complete cars to developing only the software that would enable self-driving capabilities.

Following the report that it had approached McLaren, Apple said it "does not comment on rumours or speculation". McLaren makes some of the best high-performance cars and runs a distinguished Formula One team so it has a lot going for it. The carmaker produced only 1,654 vehicles past year, many costing as much as $1 million apiece.

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