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Even though Shuttle Computer has never been a huge maker of computer mainboards, it managed to make small form-factor personal computer barebones really popular early in this decade. But larger competitors also started to create small systems, dropping the demand for Shuttle’s XPC machines. Now the company is faces a takeover by someone larger.

There are strong rumours about possibility of Shuttle takeover by Acer or Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), according to a news-story by DigiTimes web-site. Both Acer and ECS are two large players in the computer business: former is the fourth largest maker of PCs in the world, while the latter is one of the top motherboard manufacturers who is also eyeing some different markets too.

Both Acer and ECS might be interested in getting developers as well as system designs from Shuttle to use them under their brands. However, Acer has ties with AOpen, who also designs, produces and sells small form-factor (SFF) systems and it may not be necessary for the No. 4 maker of PCs to takeover Shuttle. ECS, on the other hand, also acquired desktop maker Tatung and laptop maker Uniwill, which means that another acquisition will hardly do any good for the company.

It should be kept in mind that Shuttle’s business has been either stagnation on the decline for several years and the company may need to be acquired in order to improve its financial situation. Obviously, the most likely candidates to get Shuttle are either top PC vendors or large contract manufacturers, such as Foxconn Electronics, who are constantly looking forward improving their businesses. In fact, Acer and ECS are as likely candidates as Lenovo, Foxconn or Flexctronics.

Neither of the aforementioned companies commented on the news-story.

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