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Acer, IBM form technology alliance

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) -- Taiwan's Acer Group and International Business Machines Corp. of the United States on Monday announced a seven-year, $8 billion procurement and technology alliance.

Acer, Taiwan's largest computer maker, manufactures IBM personal computers under an existing multibillion dollar agreement.Under the new pact, IBM will sell Acer hard disk drives, microelectronics, networking and display technologies, the companies said in a joint statement.

"Acer has a close ongoing business relationship with IBM ... both as supplier and customer," said Stan Shih, Acer's chief executive. "This new technology alliance will allow us to combine the resources and advantages of both companies."

The companies' collaboration could include joint development of new chips for use in IBM's PowerPC, the statement said. They would have uses in future Internet appliances and Internet-related business, it added.

IBM could also purchase liquid crystal displays from Acer, while Acer could improve its displays using technology licensed from IBM, it said.

Despite closer cooperation, the two companies said they have no plans for an equity tie-up.