Beats by Dr. Dre is looking to end its partnership with HTC by buying out the Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer's remaining shares, according to a recent report.
The uber-trendy headphone maker, run by hip hop superstar Dr. Dre and music industry mogul Jimmy Iovine, wants to bring in new investment so that it can branch out into new fields, says The Wall Street Journal.
The next step for Beats, having wrapped its products around the heads of most Premier League footballers, is home audio speakers and in-car audio systems. It's also said to be planning its own online music streaming service.
In order to do this, the company wants to buy out the remaining 25 percent share held by HTC. Two years ago, HTC bought a 50.1 percent stake in Beats by Dr. Dre for $300 million, but Beats bought back half of these shares for $150 million just a year later.
Beats's revenue was an impressive $1 billion last year, which represents impressive growth from the $200 million it earned in 2010. By contrast, HTC recorded a 98 percent profit drop for the first quarter of 2013, and Q2 wasn't significantly better despite the launch of the excellent HTC One.
As part of the deal between the two companies, HTC has been featuring Beats audio software and branding on all of its phones over the past two years or so. However, this appears to have done nothing to boost handset sales for the beleaguered Taiwanese manufacturer.
Next, read our Beats by Dr. Dre Mixr review.