Two of the largest manufacturers of mobile accessories are teaming up. Salt Lake City, Utah-based Zagg said it is acquiring California-based Mophie for $100 million. Zagg is best known for its screen protectors and Mophie for its battery cases, which are used in the iPhone among other devices.
Zagg will be handling the manufacturing in both areas as Mophie becomes part of Zagg. Mophie CEO Daniel Huang will continue with his current responsibilities, reporting to Zagg CEO Randy Hales, according to the companies.
The deal was approved by the boards of both companies and should close later in the quarter. Combined, the two companies generated net sales of about $470 million last year. The acquisition comes with a bonus incentive that’s based on whether Mophie’s sales after April surpass $100 million for the year.
The reason phone accessories are popular is because they don’t take up much space, and therefore tend to be prominently placed in retail stores. As a testament to their popularity, accessory maker Speck Products was sold two years ago to Samsonite for $85 million.
Mophie is known for its JuicePack battery cases (pictured above) and external battery products, but it also has strong retail relationships in the U.S. and overseas as well as more than 140 U.S. and international patents. Since most phones come with non-removable batteries, users often find that third-party battery packs help their devices stay charged longer.
The JuicePack battery cases range in price from the $60 Reserve, its most compact model, to the $150 SpacePack, which provides 64 GB of extra storage along with a spare battery. Mophie makes JuicePack battery cases for iPhone models from the iPhone 4 on up, as well as for Samsung’s Galaxy Note5, S5, S6 and S6 Edge. The cases are all sold for $100. Mophie also makes battery packs compatible with HTC’s One M7 phone and LG’s G4.
Mophie got its start by making iPod accessories, including an iPod Shuffle case that was also a beer bottle opener. That product came about thanks to a pitch on a suggestion board that Mophie used to generate ideas at the Macworld Expo in 2006.
A Strong Foundation
Susan Schreiner, an analyst at C4 Trends in Boston, told us the acquisition will likely mean good things for fans of both brands.
"This brings together two respected brands that have loyal customers," said Schreiner. "People love convenience, and Mophie has shown an ability to make accessories that really work well on devices. The combined company starts from a very strong place."
In a statement, Zagg said the deal will make it the market share leader in battery cases, screen protectors, tablet keyboards and external batteries. The merger is meant to create a business with greater product diversification and improved operational capabilities, according to Zagg.
The two companies said that the merger will bring enhanced capabilities for profitable growth, superior product development, improved brand strength, expanded global distribution channels and an improved financial profile.