Amazon has signed an agreement to buy iRobot, the company behind the Roomba robot vacuum cleaner in a $1.7bn (£1.4bn) deal.
iRobot looks set to join Amazon’s devices business, which already develops products in areas from home wi-fi and networking to smart home security and lighting. Its products include the Alexa assistant, the Echo, the Ring doorbell, the Kindle e-reader and the Fire TV.
Dave Limp, SVP of Amazon Devices, says: “We know that saving time matters, and chores take precious time that can be better spend doing something that customers love. Over many years, the iRobot team has proven its ability to reinvent how people clean with products that are incredibly practical and inventive – from cleaning when and where customers want while avoiding common obstacles in the home, to automatically emptying the collection bin.
“Customers love iRobot products – and I’m excited to work with the iRobot team to invent in ways that make customers’ lives easier and more enjoyable.”
Amazon has agreed to pay $61 a share in cash for the business, while also including iRobot’s net debt. Completion of the deal is subject to shareholder approval.
Colin Angle, chairman and chief executive of iRobot, who will remain as CEO following completion of the deal, says: “Since we started iRobot, our team has been on a mission to create innovative practical products that make customers’ lives easier, leading to inventions like the Roomba and iRobot OS. Amazon shares out passion for building thoughtful innovations that empower people to do more at home, and I cannot think of a better place for our team to continue our mission. I’m hugely excited to be a part of Amazon and to see what we can build together for customers in the years ahead.”
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