Making good on the rumours that had been doing the rounds since the past couple of weeks, Google has finally confirmed it’s acquisition of Fitbit. The technology giant is acquiring the smart wearable maker for a massive $2.1 Bn.
To break down the deal, Fitbit is going for $7.35 per share. Considering the price spectrum across which its stock value has ranged over the past few years, and more importantly, the rock bottom it hit earlier this year at around $3/share, $7.35 is a very good deal for the wearable maker. Interestingly, the company’s stock first started picking up post rumors of a potential acquisition by Google.
Google is facing some formidable opponents such as Apple and Samsung in the wearable market. The company acquired some IP from Fossil earlier in the year for $40 Mn, and combined with its latest Fitbit acquisition and existing wearable capabilities, the two deals are expected to Google some teeth and claws.
Announcing the deal, Google device SVP Rick Osterloh said:
Over the years, Google has made progress with partners in this space with Wear OS and Google Fit, but we see an opportunity to invest even more in Wear OS as well as introduce Made by Google wearable devices into the market. Fitbit has been a true pioneer in the industry and has created engaging products, experiences and a vibrant community of users. By working closely with Fitbit’s team of experts, and bringing together the best AI, software and hardware, we can help spur innovation in wearables and build products to benefit even more people around the world.
Osterloh also addressed privacy concerns associated with the deal. He categorically assured that Fitbit health and wellness data would not be used in combination with Google ads to deeply target users. What’s more, users will also be able to freely choose what data they want to keep and what they want to remove from the app.
It will also be interesting to see how Fitbit’s relationship with existing partners will be affected. For instance, consider the watchmaker’s relationship with Amazon, which saw it’s Versa 2 device ship with the Alexa smart assistant. Now, with Google in the equation, we can expect Alexa to be toppled by the technology giant’s smart assistant.
Expressing his excitement at the prospect of working with Google, Fitbit CEO and co-founder James Park said:
More than 12 years ago, we set an audacious company vision – to make everyone in the world healthier. Today, I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve achieved towards reaching that goal. We have built a trusted brand that supports more than 28 million active users around the globe who rely on our products to live a healthier, more active life. Google is an ideal partner to advance our mission. With Google’s resources and global platform, Fitbit will be able to accelerate innovation in the wearables category, scale faster, and make health even more accessible to everyone. I could not be more excited for what lies ahead.
A bibliophile and a business enthusiast.