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M2M Platforms

Zebra to Buy Moto's Asset Tracking Business for $3.5B

Zebra said Tuesday that it is spending $3.5 billion in cash for Motorola Solutions' enterprise unit to ensure a future at the forefront of the business end of the Internet of Things (IoT).

Combining the businesses will create a market leader in "enterprise asset intelligence," Zebra said in a press release. The operations had combined pro-forma 2013 sales of approximately $3.5 billion.

"The companies' shared commitment to innovation will help customers harness powerful technology trends like the Internet of Things (IoT), location and motion sensing and mobile enterprise cloud computing," Anders Gustafsson, CEO of Zebra Technologies, said in the release.

The Internet of Things is a concept -- enabled by machine-to-machine communications -- where virtually everything in the future is networked and communicating data to other machines for the purposes of tracking and calibrating a host of services.

As we have seen this week, other companies are starting to bet that new networks will be needed to support the potentially massive IoT ecosystem. (See Metal Machine Music: Dedicated M2M Networks on Horizon.)

The Zebra acquisition is expected to close in the fourth quarter. Around 4,500 Motorola employees will move to Zebra.

However, Motorola Solutions is keeping its iDEN network business and associated patents. (See Sprint Shutting Down iDEN in June.)

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

DOShea 4/15/2014 | 10:36:52 PM
Re: Win for Chicago Interesting background bit: Gustafsson actually was with Motorola for a long time years ago and later Tellabs before he want on to be CEO of Spirent. I believe at the time he took over Zebra it was doing a lot with bar coding, but moving more into RFID.
Sarah Thomas 4/15/2014 | 6:24:47 PM
Win for Chicago Haven't heard of Zebra, but it's based in Chicago, as is Moto, so I bet those employees transferring over are happy about that.
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