Fossil splashes the cash to buy Misfit

Fashion giant to swallow wearable brand and use its tech in new devices
Fossil splashes the cash to buy Misfit

We know Fossil has serious wearable tech ambitions – it launched a trio of new fitness trackers along with the Q Founder Android Wear smartwatch last month – but perhaps we didn't know just how serious. The fashion brand is buying Misfit for a cool $260 million.

The move will see the Texas company swallow Misfit whole, but it will keep its CEO, Sonny Vu, as president and chief technology officer of connected devices.

It's a staggering announcement – not least because Vu told Wareable, only last week, that Misfit would be launching two new wearables at CES in January. However, the Misfit boss may have dropped us a big clue that we didn't pick up on when he said, "CES is going to be big for us, we are also announcing a new brand partnership there."

Brand partnership, complete acquisition… you say tomato, we say tomahto.

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Fossil states the acquisition not only means buying Misfit's impressive fitness tracking tech – and most notably its long battery life skills – but also expanding its connected tech offerings with "new distribution channels, new products, new brands and new enterprise partnerships, including music, fitness, healthcare and digital entities."

Misfit tech will not only find its way into Fossil devices but will also feature in the parent group's other brands including Skagen and Michael Kors.

"We have a significant opportunity to add technology and connectivity across our platform of watches and accessories," said Kosta Kartsotis, chief executive officer of Fossil Group. "With the acquisition of Misfit, Fossil Group will be uniquely positioned to lead the convergence of style and technology and to become the fashion gateway to the high-growth wearable technology and connected device markets."

"We are thrilled to join forces with Fossil Group to usher in the next era of wearables where elegance, beauty and long-lasting wearability are paramount," added Sonny Vu. "Together, we will introduce products that blend Misfit's seamless, intuitive technology and user experience with the design, style and branding that is the hallmark of Fossil Group."

Misfit Shine 2
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Back in August 2014, Vu told Wareable that Misfit tech would be inside "half a dozen" smartwatches soon. It looks as if he could have vastly underestimated.

The deal is expected to be done and dusted before the end of the year.

Could this be the start of a series of big tech giants swallowing up successful wearable brands? Google was rumoured to be making flirty eyes at Jawbone earlier this year and Adidas has already snapped up Runtastic.

What do you think?

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