Struggling Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer HTC is finding itself with fewer friends, according to a Wall Street Journal report that says the manufacturer of Beats by Dr. Dre headphones wants to buy out HTC’s 25 percent stake in the company.

The founders of Beats Electronics – music mogul Jimmy Iovine and American hip-hop producer and artist Andre Young, better known as Dr. Dre — are looking to expand their business into speakers, audio systems in cars, consumer electronics and an online streaming music service that could soon be launched.

It is now in talks with an investor that could help finance its plans and maybe take a minority ownership stake in the coming weeks, the WSJ cited people familiar with the matter as saying.

HTC has included audio software from Beats into one of its lines of phones, and bundled other phones with Beats headphones.

➤ Via Wall Street Journal

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