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Apple ended 2017 by acquiring British music app Shazam for $400 million, but the tech giant doesn’t plan on stopping these major acquisitions any time soon.
As Business Insider reports, analysts claim that the company could be working on plans to buy popular streaming service Netflix and that a deal could happen this year.
According to Citi analysts Jim Suva and Asiya Merchant, there’s a 40 percent chance that the American tech firm will acquire Netflix within the next few months. This, they claim, could happen as a result of US President Donald Trump’s corporation tax cut. Companies that make products in America are also being given tax breaks.
Through these cuts, Apple has more cash to plough into acquisitions. It’s estimated that Apple has around $252 billion in cash, and a lot of it is kept abroad. But with Trump’s business-friendly tax laws in mind, the company will be able to bring more of this money to the US. And Netflix would, of course, come at a hefty price tag.
Scott Galloway, a marketing professor at NYU Stern School of Business and the founder of a business intelligence firm, claims that Netflix will be worth $300 billion over the coming years.
Suva and Merchant, who work at analyst firm Citi Research, have ranked the companies Apple is most likely to buy. Netflix is at the top of the list. This isn’t the first time that they’ve made stark claims. Before Disney acquired Fox’s studio and TV business, Citi predicted that there was a 20-30 percent chance that Apple and Disney would join forces.
Although iTunes and Apple Music have been huge successes for the company, it’s failed to launch a TV or movie service that can rival the likes of Netflix.
Of course, things would change if a deal did happen, and the analysts believe that Apple has more than enough money to make this happen. “The firm has too much cash – nearly $250 billion – growing at $50 billion a year. This is a good problem to have,” Suva and Merchant said.
“Historically, Apple has avoided repatriating cash to the US to avoid high taxation. As such, tax reform may allow Apple to put this cash to use.
They added: “With over 90% of its cash sitting overseas, a one-time 10% repatriation tax would give Apple $220 billion for M&A or buybacks.”