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Motorola Chops Off Handset Division

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Today Motorola said it would chew off its woefully underperforming Mobile Devices group in order to safeguard its healthier businesses—namely Broadband & Mobility Solutions, which includes network equipment, walkie-talkies and business products. This comes after famous Wall Street curmudgeon Carl Icahn laid seige to the mismanaged company. Assuming the deal passes the usual legal and regulatory hurdles, shareholders will get shares of both companies, probably some time in 2009. Handset customers will presumably get nothing, at least in the short term: this doesn't seem like a vote of confidence for Motorola phones. [Reuters]