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TheStreet Open House

Munster Says Beats Seems Like Poor Fit for Apple

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- After a media report stated that Apple (AAPL) was in talks about buying Beats Electronics, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster wrote that acquiring Beats "sounds like a bad idea" for the iPhone and iPad maker. Beats Electronics, which was co-founded by rapper and record producer Dr. Dre, sells headphones and other audio equipment and operates a music streaming service.

WHAT'S NEW: Financial Times reported last night, citing people familiar with the negotiations, that Apple is in talks to acquire Beats for $3.2B in a deal that could be announced as early as next week. It's difficult to understand Apple's rationale for acquiring Beats, wrote Munster in a note to investors earlier today. Beats does not have any intellectual property that would make it a good acquisition for Apple, and although Beats would provide a world class music brand, the tech giant already has a world class brand, according to Munster. He believes that Apple would be better served by acquiring an Internet services company such as Yelp (YELP), Twitter (TWTR), Square "and even Yahoo (YHOO)." Munster kept an Overweight rating on Apple.

WHAT'S NOTABLE: Shares of another audio equipment maker, Skullcandy  (SKUL), are surging following the report. In a note to investors earlier today, research firm Roth Capital wrote that the valuation at which Apple is reportedly looking to buy Beats suggests that Skullcandy was materially undervalued before the market opened today. Apple is reportedly discussing buying Beats for about 2.2 times Beats' estimated 2013 revenue, while Skullcandy was trading at just 0.9 times its 2013 revenue, according to the firm. The firm kept a $10 price target and Buy rating on Skullcandy.

OTHERS TO WATCH: Harman International  (HAR)is an audio equipment maker, while Pandora (P) offers a music streaming service that is significantly more popular than that of Beats.

PRICE ACTION: In early trading, Apple fell about 1% to $583.20, Skullcandy jumped 5% to $7.21, Pandora rose 1.5% to $22.54 and Harman was fractionally lower at $103.65.

Reporting by Larry Ramer.

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