Amazon takes over the Roomba manufacturer iRobot. The tech giant announced this in a press release on August 6th — the purchase price amounts to $1.7 billion.
Founded in 1990, iRobot has been making the Roomba vacuum cleaner robot since 2002. iRobot has a large number of products, most of them already sold on Amazon. Now with this agreement, all those products that iRobot markets, as well as those that could be developed in the future, will become part of Amazon’s own product range, and both companies will work together on the creation of new devices.
Amazon is paying a price of $61 per share for the acquisition. Prior to the acquisition, iRobot’s share price was just under $50. iRobot’s shareholders have yet to approve the acquisition. Co-founder Colin Angle will remain CEO of iRobot after the acquisition.
Dave Limp, senior vice president of Amazon’s Devices division, welcomed the new team. He said, “Over many years, the iRobot team has proven its ability to reinvent how people clean with products that are incredibly practical and inventive.”
While Amazon doesn’t detail its plans for iRobot, the synergies with its other smart home products are clear. Last year Amazon launched its smart home robot Astro which can draw floor plans, listen for commands to move between rooms, and even recognize faces. Just like an Alexa-based device, it can answer questions, play music, and show things like the weather.