EE Times reports Acer's plan to acquire Gateway for $710 million isn't only great to expand its presence in the U.S. market but also to stem the advance of Lenovo in Europe:
In a regulatory filing on August 28, Gateway Inc. disclosed that Acer must within the next two weeks deposit approximately $48 million (35 million euro) into an escrow account to enable Gateway close on its offer to acquire European computer vendor Packard-Bell B.V.
Lenovo, which made international headlines with its purchase of IBM Corp.'s personal computer business, had been in discussions the last several weeks to acquire Packard-Bell as part of its global expansion plans.
Gateway in its filing referred to the "River Transaction," the term it is using to describe the Packard-Bell deal, and said it had agreed with Acer to "effect the River Transaction as promptly as possible."
Acer is expected to fund all costs related to the Packard-Bell deal, according to Gateway, which secured the rights to make the first offer to the European PC maker when it acquired eMachines.
EE Times says Lenovo could overcome this problem by entering a bidding war with Acer over Gateway, but this would be very costly for both companies. Another option is to bid so much for Packard-Bell that the transaction becomes too unjustifiable to Acer.