RunKeeper, a popular fitness and exercise tracking app, has been acquired by sports equipment maker Asics. With RunKeeper, Asics hopes to combine a robust fitness-tracking platform with its own expertise in creating physical products. Jason Jacobs, founder of RunKeeper, touches on this vision in his post announcing the acquisition:
When we look ahead, it seems clear that the fitness brands of the future will not just make physical products, but will be embedded in the consumer journey in ways that will help keep people motivated and maximize their enjoyment of sport. By putting these two pieces together (digital fitness platform and world class physical products), you can build a new kind of fitness brand that has a deeper, more trusted relationship with consumers and can engage with them in a more personalized way.
The Asics acquisition of RunKeeper is just the latest in a recent string of similar purchases by other major sportswear manufacturers. Under Armour snapped up Endomondo and MyFitnessPal in early 2015, while Adidas purchased Runtastic last summer.