Unconfirmed reports said Microsoft Corp. cofounder Paul Allen's investment
subsidiary, Vulcan Ventures Inc., is in talks to buy Moxi Digital Inc.
The company has come up with a design for a multifunction digital set-top box
able to manage and play digital video and audio files with an Internet link --
the brainchild of former WebTV founder Steve Perlman.
After toiling for about one year in stealth under the Rearden Steel
Technologies Inc. name, Moxi debuted in January at the Consumer Electronics
But since then, only initial investor EchoStar Communications Corp. has
bitten on the box design, and there have been mutterings that the company has
burned through much of its cash reserves.
Perlman stepped down as CEO last month, handing the reins over to Rita
Brogley, Moxi's vice president of sales, marketing and business development.
A report in Business Week magazine claimed that AOL Time Warner Inc.
offered to buy Moxi for $100 million but was turned down.
In stepped Vulcan, which was also an initial investor. If a deal is cut, the
Seattle-based investment company could pay much less than Moxi's original $267