An inside source at NVIDIA was heard today to have said, “VisionTek is toast, and we are letting them go down. We are not helping them out.”
This would seem to confirm what we have been hearing for the last three days about VisionTek, the biggest producer of graphics cards using the NVIDIA chipset in the US retail market. This situation will likely put NVIDIA in a difficult situation going into the holiday season. Although it is still possible for other NVIDIA OEMs to pick up the slack from the apparent loss of VisionTek, it will not be easy, as VisionTek occupies more retail shelf space than most of the other NVIDIA OEMs. In same cases this space might be picked up by rival ATI, who in many cases has cards right next to the VisionTek models on the shelves.
Rumors now suggest that VisionTek is looking for a buyer. If this is the case, this could be a good investment for a company that is looking to quickly gain market share and presence in many retail outlets, as VisionTek dominates the retail shelf space in most stores.
A recent statement issued by VisionTek states that a trustee has been assigned to sell and/or liquidate the graphics card company or to find a buyer to keep the business intact. However, the mindset of VisionTek’s creditors will determine how much time VisionTek has to find a buyer.
While recent reports have indicated that VisionTek is financially troubled, the company continues to be one of the biggest producers of Nvidia-based graphics cards for the U.S. retail market. VisionTek also has a strong following with consumers in the U.S. VisionTek recently issued a statement to the effect that its creditors would be seeking the maximum value for the company’s assets in order to recover as much of their investment as possible. Several industry sources have indicated that the best possible outcome for everyone would be for VisionTek to remain intact, and sold to another company. There is little speculation on who a potential buyer might be. Some have suggested that PNY might be a good fit with VisionTek, or perhaps one of several motherboard manufacturers seeking to increase their retail shelf presence would be willing to merge their product line with VisionTek’s, while retaining the VisionTek brand name that consumers are familiar with.
A VisionTek issued statement specifies that “An Assignee/Trustee has been appointed, and will attempt to maximize the value of the company’s assets. It is the Assignee/Trustee’s belief is that the assets have a higher value as a “turn-key” operation rather than in liquidation. The Trustee is continuing to operate the company to determine if a sale is a viable alternative to liquidation, and he is currently talking to interested parties. The company is continuing to take orders, ship products, and honor rebates.”
VisionTek’s current financial turmoil may, or may not, affect current users of VisionTek cards. VisionTek Marketing representative, John Malley, issued the following statement: “Technical Support and warranties will continue unaffected. Our plan is to find a way to make this work in the long term. We still have a full technical support staff answering emails and the phones.”
Given the fact that VisionTek cards closely follow the NVIDIA reference design, VisionTek card owners can rest assured that NVIDIA’s reference drivers will support those cards well into the future; however, warranty repair and replacement might be problematic.