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Roomba Maker Cannot Join Amazon, EU Rules

iRobot faces restructure after regulators cite competition concerns

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Amazon and iRobot have mutually agreed to terminate their 2022 acquisition agreement after European Union regulators found that the $1.65 billion deal would have suppressed competition in the robot vacuum cleaner market.

The tie-up was envisioned by the two companies as a means to bolster innovation and offer consumers more competitive pricing on iRobot's products, notably its flagship Roomba vacuum cleaners.

This shift represents a critical juncture for iRobot, as the termination of the deal necessitates a pivot towards future strategies independent of Amazon's resources. The company announced a restructuring plan that includes cutting 350 jobs, accounting for 31% of its workforce, by the end of March. As part of the termination agreement, Amazon will pay iRobot a $94 million termination fee.

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