Opera Software is to enter into an agreement with a Chinese technology consortium that will see its browser, performance, and privacy software split from its parent.
Opera, best known for the minority share desktop and mobile browser software which bears its name, had been in talks with the Chinese Kunqi consortium for a deal valued at $1.2 billion. Concerns over regulatory approval issues surrounding such a takeover, however, have lead to what newswire service Reuters
has called an 'alternative deal
': taking around half the company, including its best known products, for $600 million.
The deal will see Opera's consumer business come under Kunqi ownership, including its mobile and desktop browser software alongside apps it has developed for boosting performance and privacy. The deal will also see Kunqi take control of Opera's technology licensing business along with its shares on nHorizon, a Chinese joint venture into which the company had invested. Opera's Norwegian arm will retain ownership of its advertising and marketing, TV, and gaming business units.
Opera, which has been outspoken of late following the release of VPN
technologies to its browser engine, has not commented on the deal.