The European Commission opened an in-depth investigation into the proposed merger under the EU Merger Regulation in July 2023 and was concerned whether the transaction would enable Amazon to stifle competition in the market for robot vacuum cleaners

Amazon iRobot

Amazon, iRobot deal likely to secure unconditional EU antitrust approval. (Credit: iRobot Corporation)

Amazon is set to secure an unconditional European Union (EU) antitrust approval for its previously announced $1.7bn acquisition of US-based consumer robot company iRobot, reported Reuters citing three people familiar with the matter.

The European Commission (EC) opened an in-depth investigation into the proposed merger under the EU Merger Regulation in July 2023.

The regulatory body was concerned whether the transaction would enable Amazon to stifle competition in the market for robot vacuum cleaners (RVCs).

Besides, the EC probed if the merger would bolster Amazon’s position as an online marketplace provider.

Amazon agreed to the all-cash deal with the publicly-listed iRobot in August last year.

As per the terms of the transaction, shareholders of the consumer robot company will be paid $61 per share by the e-commerce major.

Founded by Massachusetts Institute of Technology roboticists in 1990, iRobot is engaged in designing and developing “thoughtful” robots and “intelligent” home innovations like robotic cleaning products.

The American company introduced its Roomba robot vacuum in 2002.

iRobot’s product portfolio includes technologies and advanced concepts in cleaning, mapping, and navigation.

The consumer robot company is said to have sold more than 40 million robots across the globe.

In April 2023, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) launched a phase 1 investigation into the deal.

The regulator was considering if the acquisition would lead to a relevant merger situation under the merger provisions of the Enterprise Act 2002.

It also investigated if the Amazon-iRobot merger would harm competition within any market or markets in the UK for services or goods.

After two months, the British competition watchdog cleared the proposed acquisition.