EU Blocks Amazon Takeover of iRobot

Regulators are concerned that if the deal goes through, Amazon could give preferential treatment to the Roomba, making it difficult for other vacuum manufacturers to compete.
25 January 2024
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The European Union's competition watchdog is set to block Amazon's acquisition of iRobot, a vacuum cleaner manufacturer.

This is a blow to Amazon, as it had received approval from the UK government. The Competition and Markets Authority found that Amazon's presence in the UK market was not significant, and it already faced tough competition.

Amazon has declined to comment on the matter.

The online giant had planned to purchase iRobot for $1.7 billion (£1.4bn) in order to expand its offering of smart home appliances.

However, regulators are concerned that this acquisition could harm competition, particularly if Amazon gives preferential treatment to iRobot products on its e-commerce platform.

The European Commission has until February 14 to make a decision on the acquisition, but a consensus among its political leaders is required for a final decision to be issued.

The news of the EU's intentions caused iRobot shares to drop by 40%. This acquisition was seen as a positive development for iRobot, which has been struggling with declining sales. Critics argue that blocking the deal could limit options for consumers and hinder competition in the home robotics sector. Roomba models currently sell for around £1648 in the UK.

- CyberBeat


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