UPDATE 3-HTC under pressure to find partner after first quarterly loss

Fri Oct 4, 2013 3:26am EDT
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* HTC Q3 net loss T$2.97 bln vs consensus of T$1.8 bln

* Revenue slid by a third in the third quarter

* HTC hit by competition, supply chain woes, internal feuds

* Shares up 1.5 pct after contrarian brokerage report

By Michael Gold

TAIPEI, Oct 4 (Reuters) - Taiwan's HTC Corp slid into the red for the first time in the third quarter, adding to the case for the troubled smartphone maker to abandon its prized independence and reach out for a white knight soon.

Like other strugglers in the sector, HTC has been laid low by the product and marketing might of Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd - woes that have been exacerbated by supply chain constraints and internal turmoil.

But where Nokia Oyj has fallen into the arms of Microsoft Corp and Blackberry Ltd is now in play with one disclosed offer and another being considered, HTC has stuck to its guns that it is not for sale despite what analysts call an increasingly bleak outlook.

HTC posted a quarterly operating loss of T$3.5 billion ($120 million) on Friday as sales tumbled by a third from a year earlier, underscoring a dramatic decline for a company which boasts award-winning smartphones but has failed to develop a durable brand image.   Continued...