Opera never really gained traction, its almost nonexistent in the desktop browser market and even though it scored some popularity with its mobile browser, it has become more and more irrelevant in recent years. Now it looks like Chinese investors are interested in taking over the Norwegian browser developer for $1.2 billion, a 53 percent premium over Opera's closing price on the Oslo stock exchange before buyout rumors started circling around. Opera reportedly started looking for a buyer since 2015.
The Norwegian company has confirmed that it has recently received an acquisition offer from Kunlun Tech and Qihoo 360, backed by Golden Brick Silk Road and Yonglian investment firms. Kunlun Tech is a gaming company that bought a majority stake in gay dating app Grindr in January, while Qihoo is an antivirus- and browser-maker.
Opera's CEO issued the following statement to urge shareholders to approve the takeover:
There is strong strategic and industrial logic to the acquisition of Opera by the Consortium. We believe that the Consortium, with its breadth of expertise and strong market position in emerging markets, will be a strong owner of Opera. The Consortium's ownership will strengthen Opera's position to serve our users and partners with even greater innovation, and to accelerate our plans of expansion and growth.