Adidas mentioned in its blog post yesterday that it just acquired fitness tracking app startup Runtastic for $240 million. Along with the acquisition, Adidas gains access to a community of 70 million active users, helping it gain traction in the connected wearables industry.
The Europe-based app maker, founded in Austria back in 2009, has over 20 fitness, health and endurance apps in its collection as well has wearable hardware and other fitness monitoring tools. Runtastic’s has gained more than 140 million downloads in total between all of its apps, which is most likely why it caught the eye of Adidas.
Adidas is not the first or only athletic clothing line to work in the app and wearable fitness industry. Rival Nike was a pioneer in fitness tracking, teaming up with Apple on the Nike+ running program for the iPod and iPhone and launching the FuelBand in 2012.
Under Armour, which just last year overtook Adidas as the second-biggest sportswear maker in the U.S., acquired diet and exercise app MyFitnessPal for $475 million and social fitness network Endomondo for $85 million earlier this year.
Gschwandtner writes on the Runtastic blog that it will remain its “own entity” within the adidas Group, and will continue to operate from its current offices in Linz, Austria, Vienna and San Francisco. He also goes on toe mention that “more ideas, products and optimizations” are on the roadmap.
“Both companies firmly believe that together we can build a unique product portfolio and unparalleled customer journey for our existing community members and future users,” he wrote.
The acquisition of Runtastic comes at a critical time for Adidas as they continue to lose marketshare to fast growing athletic apparel companies like Nike and Under Armour who also have their share of wearable tech products. It is now apparent that Adidas is serious about entering the wearable tech and fitness market with their recent pricey acquisition.