LONDON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Motorola Solutions Inc said on Friday it had agreed to buy Psion Plc, the British company that pioneered portable computing with its “Organiser” device in the 1980s, for $200 million to expand its business with industrial clients.
The U.S. maker of two-way radios and public safety equipment agreed to pay 88 pence in cash for each Psion share, a premium of 45.5 percent on Thursday’s 60.5p closing price.
Psion today makes rugged and vehicle mounted computers for industrial use after it withdrew from the consumer market more than 10 years ago.
But it remains best known for its personal digital assistants, a class of device it founded with the Organiser in 1984.
The Organiser combined a clock with a database that could store information without the need for mains power. Later PDAs made by the company had clam-shell designs and they attracted the attention of many third-party software developers.
Psion’s Organiser pre-dated the more widely known Palm Pilot PDA, which was launched in the mid 1990s.
The personal organizer category has since been superceded by smartphones such as the BlackBerry from Research In Motion Ltd and the iPhone from Apple Inc, which incorporate much of the capabilities of organizers as well as support for email, web access and phone calls.
Shares in Motorola Solutions were up 69 cents or 1.5 percent at 448.04 while Psion was up 45 percent at 87.5p.
Reporting by Paul Sandle in London and Sinead Carew in New York; Editing by David Holmes