Foxconn, the Taiwanese manufacturer responsible for manufacturing the Apple iPhone, has announced plans to acquire Belkin and its Linksys and Wemo subsidiary brands for $866 million in cash, by way of a merger.
The deal is actually being carried out by Foxconn Interconnect Technology, a subsidiary responsible for building cables and connectors. Nevertheless, Foxconn's acquisition will mark the first time it has owned and operated a consumer-facing brand in its 44 years, and the plan is to start growing into the smart home business.
Belkin has been making cases and accessories for 35 years and has become one of the bigger names in the world of Apple accessories. However it's not the case business Foxconn is going after, but rather Belkin's routers, networking products and smart home devices, which derive from its Linksys and Wemo brands.
The deal hasn't been completely signed off just yet, as it needs to pass through the US Committee of Foreign Investment, but Foxconn has allegedly promised to build a $10 billion factory in Wisconsin, which should help its case.
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It's not the first time Foxconn has acquired a company, but the Belkin deal will be its first consumer-facing brand. In 2016, Foxconn paid out $3.8bn for a controlling stake of Japan display manufacturer, Sharp.