Analyst: Motorola could split four ways next year

Motorola stock jumped yesterday--from around $8.20 to $8.60 per share--after an analyst predicted the company could be broken up into four pieces by next year.

Bernstein Research analyst Pierre Ferragu said Motorola is "a combination of four business entities with no synergies," and speculated in a research note it would be broken up in 2010. He said the company's home and networks division could be split into two separate businesses, with Ericsson as a possible suitor for Motorola's networks division. Enterprise mobility and mobile devices are the company's other two units.

In November, rumors began circulating that Motorola was considering selling its home and networks business for about $4.5 billion. Motorola co-CEO Greg Brown said recently the company remains committed to its plan to eventually spin off its mobile devices division. Ferragu said Motorola's mobile devices unit--which is in the process of refocusing on Android smartphones--is worth around $1.80 to $3 per share, and might be attractive to other handset makers, including Sony Ericsson.

A Motorola spokeswoman declined to comment.

The company's stock leveled off at around $8.40 per share this morning.

For more:
- see this AP article

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