When Amazon bought the company of Wi-Fi Eero routers, our first reactions were of exhaustion, consternation and concern: why a tiny company with an excellent privacy-oriented product could not be left to its own devices, instead of being the company? giant big data from Seattle?
Now we know why. Mashable reports that Amazon paid only $ 97 million for Eero, much less money than the $ 148 million it raised as a startup. This is something you do not do unless your business is in trouble, and that means that Amazon may have saved Eero from a different destination.
The Verge can confirm that the number of $ 97 million, by the way, as well as many of the other Mashable history – we saw similar documents and we believe they are the real deal. Eero declined to comment.
There are many potential side effects for Amazon buying Eero on a sale of fire, rather than profit, and MashableThe report details some of them, such as how Eero executives are playing out as multi-million dollar gold parachute thieves while ordinary employees are now taking useless stock options – or worse, stocks they bought for $ 3 now worth $ 0.03 each. This is not uncommon, but it is a pre-emptive account of how stock options work.
But – and we are very much in the territory of speculation now – I am curious to know if we should expect less from Eero, at Amazon, than we could have if it were more a success story for the startup. If Amazon could pay so little for Eero, it might have smaller ambitions for the company, and it would be much easier to justify that it was a failed experiment if something went wrong.
After all, Amazon reportedly paid more than $ 1 billion for the smart ring maker Ring in early 2018, and barely started integrating its products with Amazon's voice wizard Alexa in a simple way more than a year later.
And as Tony Fadell of Nest and Palmer Luckey of Oculus are going to tell you, a big selling price does not necessarily mean that a founder can continue to run a business indefinitely once it is sold.
Dave Limp of Amazon suggested in March that we should expect to see Eero's first attempts to "make the smart home even easier" in the next 6 to 12 months.