​Asics buys Runkeeper to gatecrash the sports tech party

Running shoe company is keeping up with the Joneses
​Asics buys Runkeeper
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Asics has bought Runkeeper, as it aims to keep up with its rivals Adidas, Nike and Under Armour.

There's no information yet how much Asics has paid out for the running app, which boasts over 40 million users, however lay offs at the company last year probably means it got a half decent price.

Essential reading: How to run better with Runkeeper

Jason Jacobs, founder of Runkeeper, took to Medium to reveal the buyout, and hinted at the future of the app:

"When we look ahead, it seems clear that the fitness brands of the future will not just make physical products, but will be embedded in the consumer journey in ways that will help keep people motivated and maximise their enjoyment of sport."

"By putting these two pieces together (digital fitness platform and world class physical products), you can build a new kind of fitness brand that has a deeper, more trusted relationship with consumers and can engage with them in a more personalised way," he said.

So what can we expect from the relationship? New sports tech has comes out of New Balance, which confirmed at CES that it was creating a digital division and Under Armour, which forked out for Endomondo and MapMyFitness last year, is now launching bands, smart scales and even connected shoes.

The truth is that most big sports companies want a digital platform for the data and the marketing potential to millions of runners, as we saw with Adidas, which snapped up rival Runkeeper's big rival Runtastic last year.

In his post Jacobs admitted nothing is likely to change immediately, but it adds Asics into the exciting mix of big brands about to take sports tech to the next level.

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