Yahoo Finance reporter Jen Schonberger details why Sen. Warren has voiced antitrust concerns about the Amazon-iRobot deal.
SEANA SMITH: Amazon's proposed $1.7 billion deal to buy iRobot is facing opposition, as lawmakers ask the FTC to block the deal. Yahoo Finance's Jennifer Schonberger has the latest on that for us. Hey, Jen.
JENNIFER SCHONBERGER: Hey there. Good afternoon, Seana. That's right. Senator Elizabeth Warren and a handful of House Democrats sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission today, calling on the agency to oppose Amazon's acquisition of iRobot on concerns that it could squelch competition and hurt consumers' privacy.
Senator Warren writing, quote, "I have serious concerns about the Amazon iRobot deal. Dominant companies like Amazon should not be allowed to just buy their way out of competing. The FTC should oppose this proposed merger to protect competition, lower consumer prices, and rein in Amazon's well-documented anti-competitive activities."
Amazon announced plans to acquire iRobot in August for nearly $1.7 billion. iRobot is best known for pioneering the robotic vacuum known as the Roomba and has reportedly has reportedly 75% market share of the smart vacuum market by revenue. Now lawmakers say that Amazon tried to compete with iRobot with their own version of the Roomba vacuum, but the products were put on hold in 2020 due to poor sales.
Amazon bet on the space when it unveiled the astro home robot equipped with the company's Alexa Digital Assistant. The lawmaker's letter also says Amazon has repeatedly used a, quote, "copy, acquire, kill" strategy to kill off rivals, citing the tech giant's previous acquisitions of Blink, Ring, and Kiva Systems. The FTC has begun a review of Amazon's proposed acquisition. While they have received the letter, they would not comment specifically on this letter to Yahoo Finance. Guys.
DAVE BRIGGS: Jen Schonberger, thanks so much. Appreciate that.