Buddy buys Victoria-based smart lighting vendor

Acquisition worth just over $70 million

Credit: Dreamstime

Australian Internet of Things (IoT) vendor Buddy Platform has entered into an agreement to acquire smart lighting company Lifx, in a deal worth $70 million.

Established in Victoria, Lifx is headquartered in the US and its solutions are sold in over 100 countries, including through retailers such as: Best Buy; Amazon; JB Hi-Fi; Bunnings; Officeworks; Beacon Lighting and Apple Stores.

If the acquisition is approved, the consideration payable to Lifx will be US$26.5 million in cash to the majority shareholder of Lifx, Luminous Wide Limited.

An issue of fully paid ordinary shares in Buddy equivalent to US$24.5 million will be issued to the remaining shareholders, bringing the total value of the acquisition to just over A$70 million.

Lifx is also entitled to further payments subject to the company achieving US$70 million in gross revenues during the 2019 calendar year.

These include US$510,000 payable to Luminous in cash; and an issue of such number of shares equivalent to US$490,000 to the minority shareholders.

Lifx's chief technology and product officer Marc Alexander will join the publicly-listed Buddy board of directors following completion of the acquisition.

Alexander and CEO Tim Peters will continue to lead and run the Lifx business post acquisition.

"Since 2012, Lifx has been at the forefront of connected lighting and has sought to fundamentally change the way people think about lighting and the spaces they occupy," Peters said.

"Our business has grown exponentially since we started, and we are very excited to join forces with Buddy to expand our customer-base, further our reach, introduce real-time energy monitoring from our lights and enter new and exciting markets.”

At the close of this transaction, Buddy will instantly have hundreds of thousands of households worldwide into which it can sell smart spaces related services overlaid on LIFX lights, while LIFX will have the means to substantially grow its sales and expand into the commercial marketplace or environments, the company told shareholders.

“This is a transformational transaction that we’re announcing today," said David McLauchlan, CEO of Buddy Platform. “As the demand from both commercial and retail customers for energy monitoring solutions increases, it makes perfect sense that we look to combine our Buddy Ohm platform with a product that can be found in every building and every space in the world -lighting.

“Marc and Tim have built Lifx into a business that all Australians can be proud of; home-grown technology evolved into a magical set of products that reimagines lighting and inspire wonder in their customers around the world."

Dicker Data has been Buddy's distributor in Australia since late 2017. Buddy's reseller negotiations with Telstra fell through in April 2018.

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