Fitbit to acquire troubled smartwatch maker Pebble
California,Dec2:Fitbit is close to a deal to acquire smartwatch maker Pebble. The “price couldn’t be learned but it is thought to be for small amount,” says a report by The Information. The report also reveals that the deal will see Pebble and its products shut in a while, with Fitbit acquiring its assets – intellectual property and software.
‘A source close to the company said that watch maker Citizen was interested in purchasing Pebble for $740 million in 2015,’ says a story by Techcrunch. This deal failed and before the launch of Pebble 2, Intel made an offer for $70 million. The CEO, Eric Migicovsky refused both offers. Fitbit is now paying between $34 and $40 million for the company and is “barely covering their debts”, adds the report.
Pebble introduced its newest version of smartwatch in October, but this year the company was experiencing many challenges; it laid off 25% of its staff in March, which was. The site also reported it was in some trouble and had turned to debt funding and loans, as well as traditional investor cash, “in order to stay afloat”.
In March this year, Pebble CEO Migicovsky confirmed that his company had raised $28 million in debt and venture financing.
Pebble was escalating the market in 2012 for running one the first largely successful Kickstarter campaigns – Pebble smartwatch. But then contenders like Jawbone and Fitbit swayed the market. Fitbit has also faced problems in recent years, being under speculation for stealing ‘secrets’ from Jawbone and slurping 57% down in the stock market in Q2 this year.