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Taiwan-based chemical conglomerate T.N.C. Industrial Co. has reportedly sold-off its stake in Taiwan-based graphics cards maker Gainward, but so far it is not completely clear, who is the actual owner of the well-known manufacturer, as different sources report contradictory statements.

“Gainward’s management succeeded in convincing Gainward’s publicly traded former investor, T.N.C Industrial Co. LTD., to sell Gainward’s shares to a new private investor group, primarily consisting of Gainward’s extended management team,” a statement by Hans-Wolfram Tismer, Managing Director Europe, Gainward Europe GmbH claims.

Mr. Tismer told X-bit labs he was one of the investors and there were no other graphics cards makers in the buy-out group.

“Taiwan-based TNC Industrial has decided to sell the Gainward brand and branch Gainward Europe GmbH to Palit Microsystems for US$1 million and the net worth of the branch office at the end of 2004 (as certified by a CPA),” a claim over DigiTimes web-site reads.

According to Mr. Tismer, the new owners of Gainward will get two strong R&D teams in China and Taiwan that “will focus on developing leading edge products for the enthusiastic PC games under the supervision of Norman Liang, formerly President of Gainward in Taiwan”, as well as “Gainward” brand-name. The executive indicated that Gainward has always outsourced its production to different companies and there are no talks about transition of any manufacturing facilities.

“I am heading to Taiwan in two weeks to decide on manufacturing capacities,” Mr. Tismer told X-bit labs on Wednesday.

Gainward also announced it moved its headquarters from Taipei, Taiwan to Munich, Germany with offices in Windsor near London (UK), Malm? (Sweden) and Moscow (Russia). Later in 2005 the company is planning to open a sales office in France. It is unclear who is to continue Gainward's business in the USA.

The decision to move Gainward’s headquarter to Munich was made immediately following Gainward’s announcement of record profits in Europe in 2004. Revenue continued to grow to ?32 million, and earnings before tax were up to ?1.1 million. For 2005, Gainward is planning on doubling its sales to more than ?60 million, targeting monthly running rates in excess of 150 000 units in Europe, the company said.

Palit Microsystems did not respond to enquiries seeking for comments at press time.

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