A Strategic Split
American advanced technology company iRobot has sold its Defense and Security division to private equity firm Arlington Capital Partners at a value of $45 million, who intends to turn it into a new stand-alone company.
According to its new CEO Sean Bielat, the new company will become the largest independent provider of ground-based robots to the Department of Defense.
This privately-held company will focus on defense, security and public safety. The rest will remain mostly unchanged, as the new company will retain iRobot’s existing Defense and Security division management and staff, and will continue to operate in Bedford, MA.
Since iRobot’s inception in 1990, it has distributed over 6,000 robots worldwide.
“We look forward to further consolidating [iRobot's Defense & Security Division] preeminent position in robotics through organic investment and acquisitions. Arlington Capital is pleased to be partnering with the iRobot Defense & Security team on this divestiture to create a new and focused robotics platform,” says Peter Manos, a Managing Partner at Arlington Capital.
Notably, this defense work is rather a long ways from what a number of individuals know iRobot as...
From the Battlefield to the Home
By letting go of its Defense and Security division, iRobot ends a multi-year revenue slide brought about by the winding down of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The split also allows the company to focus on consumer markets.
iRobot Chairman and CEO Colin Angle said that “In the spring of 2014, we engaged Blackstone Advisory Partners LP, now known as PJT Partners, to review strategic alternatives for our Defense and Security business. After a thorough and deliberate process, we've concluded the sale of the business to Arlington Capital Partners will maximize shareholder value by allowing us to focus on our much larger Home segment.”
iRobot is a publicly-traded company on the NASDAQ Exchange. It found success in the consumer marketplace with their Roomba line of robotic vacuums and they now look to continue to develop new technologies for home use.
“With 14 million robots in people's homes today and the leading market share within the robotic floor care segment, iRobot has revolutionized the way people clean,” says Angle.
“The divestiture of the Defense & Security business will allow us to focus on the Home Robots business, bring new products to market, continue our expansion in China and build upon