Friday 19 October 2018

Amazon rings up $1bn deal for door security startup

The move helps Amazon expand further into the consumer market, including providing security for package deliveries.
The move helps Amazon expand further into the consumer market, including providing security for package deliveries.

Amazon.com has agreed to buy connected-doorbell startup Ring Inc for about $1bn, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The move helps Amazon expand further into the consumer market, including providing security for package deliveries.

The acquisition puts Amazon in more direct competition with security camera makers such as Nest Labs, Honeywell International and Canary Connect.

Amazon has been pushing for a bigger presence in homes through connected devices such as its Echo smart speaker with the voice-activated assistant Alexa.

Buying Ring gives the ecommerce giant another touch point with customers, said James Cakmak, an analyst at Monness Crespi Hardt & Co.

"For this specifically it A) builds connection for further strengthening trust between the brand and consumers, B) increases market for delivery, and in turn, frequency, C) moves company along path to same day/same hour efforts while everyone else is battling the two-day war," Cakmak said in an email.

Last year, Amazon introduced Amazon Key, a service that incorporates a smart lock that can open doors for verified delivery drivers to deposit packages directly into a shopper's home.

Package thefts from doorsteps have increased in recent years with the spread of online shopping and deliveries.

Ring makes video doorbells and security cameras that connect to users' phones or computers, letting them see and speak to anyone on their property from afar.

The company, based in Santa Monica, California, also sells related products such as security systems and smoke detectors.

JPMorgan Chase advised Ring on the sale, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.

A representative for JPMorgan declined to comment.

"Ring's home security products and services have delighted customers since day one," an Amazon representative said in a joint statement with Ring. "We're excited to work with this talented team and help them in their mission to keep homes safe and secure."

Bloomberg

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