Diebold announced on Thursday that it has sold its voting machine division to Election Systems & Software (ES&S), a former competitor. Diebold's unceremonious departure from the electronic voting machine business will be welcomed by critics of the company's controversial direct-recording electronic voting products.

Diebold, which is primarily an ATM maker, decided to unload its voting machine subsidiary—Premier Election Solutions—for roughly $5 million and change. As a consequence of the deal, the company expects to report a loss of over $45 million. According to a statement issued by Diebold, the company has been looking for a way out of the voting machine racket ("pursuing strategic alternatives to ownership") since 2006 when it realized that the whole endeavor was intractably dysfunctional ("identified its US elections systems business as non-core to its operations").

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