Google (NASDAQ: GOOG ) is taking steps to prove its glasses are more than a gimmick. Taiwanese chip maker Himax Technologies (NASDAQ: HIMX ) announced today that Google has agreed to invest in Himax's display subsidiary to finance production of liquid crystal on silicon chips (LCOS), the same type used in Google Glass.
"Google is a preeminent global technology leader. We are delighted to receive this investment and to form a strategic partnership with Google," said Himax President and CEO Jordan Wu in a statement. "Beginning the second quarter of this year, we had already begun expanding capacity to meet demand for our LCOS product line. This investment from Google further validates our commitment to developing breakthrough technologies and state-of-the-art production facilities. We look forward to leveraging this investment and our collective expertise with Google to create unique and transformational LCOS technologies for many years ahead."
Shares of Himax soared 34% today as Google took a 6.3% stake in Himax subsidiary Himax Display. The deal also calls for Himax to prioritize investment in its displays, and allows Google to purchase additional preferred shares at the same price any time within the next year, increasing its total ownership up to 14.8%. Himax Technologies owns 81.5% of Himax Display and will remain the majority shareholder.
The deal is expected to close this quarter. The companies did not put a value on it.
-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.