Google to buy stake in ADT in home security push for $450 million

Google extends work-from-home order to summer 2021
FILE PHOTO: After the company announced it would extend its coronavirus work-from-home order until summer 2021, a Google sign is shown at one of the company's office complexes in Irvine, California, U.S., July 27, 2020. REUTERS/Mike Blake

August 3, 2020

By Subrat Patnaik

(Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s <GOOGL.O> Google is picking up a 6.6% stake in ADT Inc <ADT.N> for $450 million, betting on the home security company’s strong customer base and an army of technicians to drive sales of its Nest devices.

ADT shares nearly doubled to hit a high of $17.2 and traded well above their IPO price of $14 for the first time since going public in 2018, briefly valuing the company at about $13 billion.

The investment gives ADT the backing of a high-profile technology partner and broadens its services business. In return, Google gets access to about 6.5 million customers, strengthening its presence as it competes with Amazon.com’s <AMZN.O> Ring and Boston-based SimpliSafe, among others.

ADT said on Monday that the two companies would work on ways to package popular Google products like Home Mini, Nest Thermostat and Nest Wifi with ADT’s strength in installation and maintenance.

“Later this year, we will begin integrating Google devices and make them available for installations to our customers,” ADT Chief Executive Officer Jim DeVries told Reuters.

“We will exclusively support Nest products,” DeVries said, adding that the companies will build products together and start rolling them out next year.

The companies will commit an additional $150 million each for co-marketing, product development, technology and employee training, ADT said.

Google will buy 54.7 million newly created Class B shares of ADT for $8.22 each with no voting rights, the Boca Raton, Florida-based company said in a filing.

Founded in 1874, ADT is backed by private-equity firm Apollo Global Management LLC, which owns 83.5% of the company, according to Refinitiv data. Apollo had taken ADT private in a nearly $7 billion deal in 2016.

(Reporting by Subrat Patnaik in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Anil D’Silva)