Shareholders OK Palm Acquisition and Spin-off

Palm, Inc. and Handspring, Inc. today announced that stockholders of both companies have approved a transaction that transforms the landscape for handheld computing and communications. The transactions are expected to close later today, PalmSource and palmOne begin trading tomorrow on the Nasdaq stock market.

At Palm's Annual Stockholders Meeting today, stockholders approved the spin-off of PalmSource, Inc., provider of the world's leading operating system platform for mobile computing and communications, from Palm, Inc. Palm will distribute all the shares of PalmSource it owns (approximately 86 percent of the total) to Palm stockholders of record as of the close of business today. Those Palm stockholders will receive approximately 0.31 shares of PalmSource common stock for each share of Palm common stock they own. PalmSource common stock will trade on the Nasdaq stock market under the ticker symbol PSRC, starting tomorrow.

Palm stockholders also approved the acquisition of Handspring, Inc., maker of innovative smartphones based upon the Palm OS platform. Separately, Handspring stockholders approved the acquisition of their company by Palm, Inc. The acquisition will be completed as a merger with Palm issuing approximately 13.9 million shares to Handspring stockholders. Handspring's stockholders will receive 0.09 Palm shares for each share of Handspring common stock owned. The resulting company has been renamed palmOne, Inc. Its common stock will trade on the Nasdaq stock market exchange under the ticker symbol PLMO, starting tomorrow.

"PalmSource emerges as the premier operating-system platform company in the handheld industry, better able as an independent company to attract new and varied licensees and to further build the Palm Economy," said Eric Benhamou, chairman of PalmSource and palmOne. "palmOne emerges as a stronger leader in mobile computing and communications, better able to address customer needs with the broadest portfolio, widest distribution channels and the most-experienced leadership team in the industry.

PalmSource LogoPalmSource
As an independent company, PalmSource will be better able to deliver on its corporate objectives of growing the Palm Economy, maintaining its platform leadership, and delivering consistent profitability.

"We are at the beginning of a new phase in the growth of smart mobile devices," said David Nagel, PalmSource president and chief executive officer. "As an independent company, PalmSource can accelerate the acceptance of Palm OS as the leading software platform for a wide range of innovative new products." PalmSource has headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif., and employs 311 people. More on the PalmSource spin out is available here.

The new, stronger competitor created in palmOne is better able to meet the company's corporate objectives of growing the market, maintaining industry leadership, and achieving consistent profitability. "This merger of leaders gives palmOne significant advantages as we build on delivering what matters most to customers, including the high-potential category of smartphones," said Todd Bradley, palmOne president and chief executive officer. "We'll work to continue pleasing customers from the newest consumer who is just now moving beyond paper organizers to the multimedia enthusiast, and from the mobile professional to the chief information officer. We're also confident that our combined scale will allow us to capitalize on the operational discipline we've put in place over the last two years."

New LeadershippalmOne has headquarters in Milpitas, Calif., and employs 815 people. In addition to Bradley, the new company's executive team includes the following:

  • Jeff Hawkins, chief technology officer
  • Judy Bruner, senior vice president and chief financial officer
  • Ed Colligan, senior vice president and general manager of the Wireless Business Unit, which includes the Treo(TM) family of smartphones
  • Ken Wirt, senior vice president and general manager of the Handheld Business Unit, which includes the Zire(TM) and Tungsten(TM) product families
  • Angel Mendez, senior vice president of Global Operations
  • Mary Doyle, senior vice president and general counsel
  • Patricia Tomlinson, senior vice president and chief human resources officer.

The palmOne board of directors consists of seven members from the former Palm, Inc. board plus three members of the former Handspring board of directors: John Doerr, Bruce Dunlevie and Donna Dubinsky. Benhamou continues as chairman of PalmSource and palmOne.

Palm, Inc. and Handspring, Inc. Historical Timeline

1992 - Jeff Hawkins founds Palm, Inc.
1995 - U.S. Robotics purchases Palm, Inc.
1996 - Palm introduces the PalmPilot 1000 and 5000 organizers.
1997 - 3Com purchases U.S. Robotics.
1998 - Hawkins, Dubinsky and Colligan leave Palm to create Handspring.
2000 - Palm executes an Initial Public Offering, separating from 3Com.

-Palm begins building separate businesses
-Todd Bradley named Palm Solutions Group executive vice president and chief operating officer (June 1)
-Palm announces plans to create the Palm OS subsidiary (July 27)
-Palm OS subsidiary acquires assets and talent from Be, Inc. (Aug. 16)
-David Nagel is named Palm OS subsidiary president and chief executive officer (Aug. 27).

-Palm further builds on two businesses
-Palm OS subsidiary creation completed (Jan. 1)
-Bradley promoted to president and chief operating officer of Palm Solutions Group (May 2)
-Palm OS subsidiary named PalmSource
-PalmSource names board of directors (June 24)
-Bradley named Palm Solutions Group chief executive officer (June 25)
-Palm Solutions Group and PalmSource move to separate campuses (August)
-Sony invests $20 million in PalmSource, marking first outside investment (Oct. 8)
-PalmSource adds four new licensees in year
-IRS rules the spin-off as tax-free for U.S. citizens' federal income-tax purposes (December)

-Palm strengths position in the handheld computing and communications space
-Announces plans to acquire Handspring and spin off PalmSource, Inc. (June 3)
-Stockholders approve transaction to spin off PalmSource, Inc. and acquire Handspring to form palmOne, Inc. (Oct. 28)

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first comment

dickius @ 10/28/2003 4:24:20 PM #
I have nothing to say

Palm Shareholders OK a Marriage of Desperation

Gekko @ 10/28/2003 5:50:43 PM #
RE: Palm Shareholders OK a Marriage of Desperation
RhinoSteve @ 10/29/2003 4:59:11 PM #
Not a marrage but more like the hot shot high school kid that tried to go on their own (Handspring) getting beaten up buy the boys downtown and coming home. Those in the former Handspring have a lot of wounds to lick and one big piece of lower back pain called Springboard.


Strider_mt2k @ 10/28/2003 7:33:27 PM #
To celebrate, they hired 5 more Vice Presidents, who were then released at a public ceremony.


monkeyrun @ 10/30/2003 12:00:20 PM #
does that mean Palm could finally make some smartphone with some decent smartphone operating system (aka Symbian) ?

they know how to speak when convenient

babsknupp @ 10/30/2003 1:04:33 PM #
Sure, Palm can publically announce something like this but total silence about the T3 issues...

--Remember anew today those moments when you were happiest and most complete – and make their possibilities someone else’s reality--

Lamers don't die

grg @ 10/30/2003 1:10:49 PM #
From Tom Jacobs at today's (

Palm suxx ... blah blah blah ... Palm looses marketshare ... FUD FUD FUD ... PocketPC rulez ... blah blah blah ... Dell roxx ... blah blah blah ....

Motley Fool Senior Analyst Tom Jacobs owns shares of Nokia and Microsoft.

RE: Lamers don't die
Foo Fighter @ 10/30/2003 2:04:01 PM #
I don't see where you getting this Pocket PC slant from. He's just pointing out the current and changing market conditions, and problems both companies will face. Hardly biased, it's called reporting the facts.

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