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Google Bid Against Unnamed Firm For Fitbit Deal

Google Bid Against Unnamed Firm For Fitbit Deal

A recent SEC filing revealed that two companies were aggressively bidding to buy Fitbit. Although multiple firms met with the company to talk about an acquisition, it was only Google and a mystery firm that ultimately came through with serious bids, CNBC reported.

The identity of the other firm was not revealed, but the report noted that UnitedHealthcare and Fitbit already had a Motion wellness partnership program, while Amazon has been aggressively looking into the health-tracking wearable sector.

The Google/Fitbit deal was announced on Nov. 1, when Alphabet, Google’s parent, noted it would buy the company for roughly $2.1 billion in cash or $7.35 a share.

If the second company had not bid, Google could have ended up paying much less, the report noted. Talks with an unidentified “Party A” started on June 11. At that time, Fitbit CEO James Park and the CEO of the bidding company had dinner “and discussed generally the wearables technology landscape.” 

On Aug. 20, senior management of Fitbit gave “an overview of Fitbit’s business to members of Google’s management.” After a bidding war, Fitbit asked its bank to receive a final offer from both firms. Google offered $7.05 per share, but Party A’s chief executive gave a verbal agreement to buy the company for $7.30 a share, as Fitbit was working on an exclusivity agreement with the tech company. 

Google submitted its final offer to buy Fitbit for $7.35 a share. The filing said “the revised proposal was conditioned on Fitbit immediately entering into the exclusivity agreement.” Then, in a press release on Nov. 1, Google said it had reached a definitive agreement to acquire Fitbit.

Google’s Senior Vice President of Devices and Services Rick Osterloh said at the time, “Over the years, Google has made progress with partners in this space with Wear OS and Google Fit, but we see an opportunity to invest even more in Wear OS as well as to introduce Made by Google wearable devices into the market.” 

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