iRobot Corporation , the Maker of Roomba Vacuum Moving Out of Defense and Security Business
iRobot Corporation, the Bedford, Massachusetts based American advanced technology company had great success when it unveiled the Roomba, its vacuum cleaner robot way back in 2002. High demands greeted the dinner plate on wheels which zoomed over carpets cleaning the dust and dirt effortlessly. The company sold some millions of that device as it also marked the marked the first typical household robot.
However, along with the domestic models, the company also created three MIT roboticists which were being used for a more serious purpose in the defense industry. Prior to launching its domestic robots, iRobot devices were already being used by the U.S. troops and one was detecting land mines. Equipped with tank treads and camera on top an extendable metal neck, iRobot's PackBot also were used to search for survivors after the World Trade Center attack on September 11th, from among the ruins.
iRobot is by far the biggest supplier of ground based robots to the U.S. Department of Defense but in the previous week, the company announced that it plans to end its journey as a defense contractor.
According to the company it plans will sell its defense and security business to a private equity firm based in Chevy Chase, Maryland, called Arlington Capital Partners. The company says Arlington Capital has connection with the government contracting world. Based on sales target, the price could be up to $45 million. According to a spokesman of the company, a new name will be announced for the defense unit once the deal is completed, which is expected to be done in a few months.
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