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Amazon buys Roomba vacuum maker for US$1.7 billion

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Post time 2022-8-6 16:43:30 | Show all posts |Read mode
Amazon buys Roomba vacuum maker for US$1.7 billion

Amazon will acquire iRobot, maker of the robotic vacuum cleaner Roomba, in an all-cash deal for about US$1.7 billion in the latest push by the world's largest online retailer to expand its stable of smart home devices.

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Amazon will pay US$61 per share, valuing iRobot at a premium of 22 per cent to the stock's last closing price of US$49.99.

iRobot's stock rose 19 per cent in Friday trading to US$59.66. At its peak during pandemic lockdowns, iRobot shares were more than twice that price as hygiene-conscious consumers invested in premium vacuum cleaners.

The acquisition follows through on a vision that Amazon outlined in 2021. Amazon Senior Vice President Dave Limp told reporters, "In five to 10 years, we believe every home will have at least one robot that will become a core part of your everyday life".

iRobot CEO Colin Angle likewise has said homes should have myriad devices that seamlessly communicate with each other and one day address social challenges such as eldercare.

Amazon already has its virtual assistant Alexa; Ring, which it acquired to further home security; and a smart thermostat, giving it a range of products in the "internet of things" category, said Ethan Glass, an antitrust expert with law firm Cooley LLP.

Glass said the US Federal Trade Commission, which is already investigating Amazon, would likely review the transaction.

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