We're always on the look-out for companies making shrewd investments and acquisitions. So today we were interested to see the latest news about Chinese computer manufacturer Lenovo and their on-going effort to purchase the PC division of IBM.
A couple months ago Lenovo and IBM agreed to the purchase. But, as you might imagine, US regulators have serious concerns about the potential for industrial espionage (and, I would assume, good old-fashioned espionage espionage too) given that IBM is one of the leading US computer manufacturers, as well as a center of high-tech research.
According to today's report from Bloomberg, US regulators still aren't satisfied that IBM and Lenovo have dealt with the national security concerns surrounding the deal and have yet to sign off on it.
Now, I had actually heard a while back that Lenovo's stock had gone up on the first news of the regulatory hold-up because the IBM PC division's profit margins are so thin and investors question whether Lenovo should be buying the thing in the first place.
So what's the shrewd acquisition?
Well, I don't know about Lenovo. But IBM knows what's up. They just went out and bought Bruce Mehlman to grease the wheels of the federal bureaucracy and get the deal done. And that's quite an acquisition since Bruce is the brother of Ken Mehlman, Chairman of the Republican National Committee and Chairman of President Bush's successful reelection campaign.
In other words, Bruce's brother is arguably the man most responsible for the president's reelection after Karl Rove. So I figure he gets his calls returned and doors get opened, maybe even export restrictions.
All I can think to say is: Brad Card, stay by your phone.