UK chip designer Imagination Technologies has put itself up for sale after losing Apple as its chief customer.
The tech firm is currently in dispute with Apple, once its largest customer, over licensing payments and alleged patent infringements.
Apple uses Imagination Technologies chip technology in its iPhones, iPads and watches. The US company once accounted for about half of the UK firm's revenues, but its announcement in April to stop using the processors caused Imagination's shares to drop more than 50 percent.
Imagination said that recent interest from a number of potential buyers in the past few weeks has caused the company to initiate a formal sale process. The UK firm also revealed that it's already begun preliminary discussions with several parties.
But it added: "There can be no certainty that any offer will be made for Imagination, nor that any transaction will be executed, nor as to terms of any such offer or transaction."
Sales of two of its businesses, MIPS and Ensigma, to raise money, are "progressing well", it said.
Apple's decision to switch from Imagination's chip technology to itsown independent design for future devices started a dispute between the two tech companies. Imagination requested evidence from Apple that Apple's new designs did not infringe Imagination's patents or intellectual property, but Apple has declined to provide this evidence.
Imagination expressed doubts that the US company would be able to create separate and original designs despite its long-term dependency on the UK firm's chip technology.
"Imagination believes that it would be extremely challenging to design a brand new GPU architecture from basics without infringing its intellectual property rights," the UK tech firm said in April. The dispute remains unsettled, and potential alternative arrangements for the current contract are being discussed.