Handheld maker Palm is putting itself up for sale according to Bloomberg sources, who assert the company is already working with Goldman Sachs and Qatalyst Partners to find a buyer. Related rumors have been around since at least last week, creating reactions in the stock market with Palm's shares rising 30% over the last 5 days. In fact, if you looked at Palm's stock record you could better understand how the company has been on a rollercoaster ride this past year, first regaining momemtum with the launch of the Pre and other WebOS-based smartphones, and most recently losing mindshare to competitors like Apple, RIM and Android phone makers.
Two potentially interested parties in taking over Palm could be Lenovo, the Chinese manufacturer that bought IBM's PC division a few years ago, and HTC Corporation, a Taiwan-based company that was better known for building Windows Mobile phones, but since last year has also been working closely with Google developing Android devices, including Google's own Nexus One smartphone.
Despite raving reviews from users and critics alike, the Pre and the Pixi phones have not generated the volume of sales Palm needed to survive this round comfortably. Even with the recent surge in stock pricing, Palm could still be a good target for a takeover bid. The company currently sits on the sixth place among smartphone makers with a 4.3 percent share, according to Gartner. Bloomberg points out that besides a strong enough brand positioning in the U.S., Palm holds an important number of patents related to mobile hardware, software and power saving technologies.