FTC reviews Amazon bids to acquire One Medical and iRobot

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is investigating Amazon’s plans to acquire the iRobot vacuum robot and the 1Life healthcare company behind One Medical, according to reports from Policy and The Wall Street Journal. Amazon announced a $3.9 billion deal to buy One Medical in July and said it would acquire iRobot for $1.7 billion a few weeks later.

One Medical serves as something of a Netflix healthcare subscription service that gives customers access to in-person and virtual appointments at 125 clinics across the United States for $199 a year. Meanwhile, iRobot is known for its line of Roomba robot vacuums which have become more adept at understanding users’ homes and habits with the rollout of iRobot OS.

The acquisitions of the two companies align with Amazon’s long-term goals of carving out a place for itself in the healthcare industry, as well as collecting more data about its customers, which Amazon could do with the capabilities of Roomba mapping.

FTC investigations could slow — or potentially stop — Amazon’s acquisition of the two companies. FTC Chairman Lina Khan has been a vocal critic of Amazon and its practices. Amazon pushed back on Khan’s plans to regulate the company when she first assumed the role of chairman, and more recently asked the FTC to limit its investigation and further testimony from current CEO Andy Jassy. and former CEO Jeff Bezos, calling it “heavy.” ”

Amazon’s offer to buy iRobot is under similar scrutiny from the FTC. Sources close to the situation said Policy that the two companies are preparing for a “potentially long and arduous investigation” to see if the merger violates antitrust laws. The FTC investigation will focus on whether data provided by Roomba gives Amazon an unfair advantage in the retail industry and how the line of robot vacuums would fit in with the products of existing smart homes from Amazon, such as Ring and Alexa.

Shortly after announcing the potential merger of 1Life, Amazon announced the closure of its virtual health service, Amazon Care, at the end of this year. Policy points out that the FTC may view this move as anti-competitive because Amazon is simply buying out one of Care’s potential competitors, rather than choosing to compete with it.

As noted by the Log, 1Life disclosed the FTC’s review of the acquisition in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Friday. Amazon’s proposed acquisitions of 1Life and iRobot come after Amazon acquired MGM for $8.45 billion.


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