Los Angeles Business Journal

Belkin Grows Home Network Business With Linksys Acquisition

By Natalie Jarvey Friday, January 25, 2013

Los Angeles is known for its ecommerce and content companies, but the city’s consumer electronics industry just got a little bigger.

Playa Vista consumer electronics manufacturer Belkin International Inc. announced late Thursday that it has acquired Linksys, the home networking unit of Cisco Systems Inc.

The acquisition, which is expected to close at the end of March, will strengthen Belkin’s current home networking products, which include Wi-Fi routers, web cams and Internet cables. Belkin will now have approximately 30 percent of the home and small business networking retail market in the United States.

Mike Chen, senior director of Belkin’s global networking division, said the purchase is a part of Belkin’s strategy to offer a more diverse portfolio of products to consumers.

“Our goal for Belkin is to be the global leader in the connected home and wireless space,” he said. “We see this acquisition as an important step in helping us realize this vision.”

Belkin plans to continue selling Linksys products under its brand name because of its name recognition among consumers looking for home routers.

The company also plans to develop a strategic relationship with Cisco in San Jose to partner on retail distribution, marketing and products in the service provider market.

Belkin was founded in 1983 by Chief Executive Chet Pipkin. The 1,200-person private company sells accessories for mobile phones and tablets in addition to its electronic equipment.

Chen said the Linksys acquisition adds to the company’s focus on connecting people to their mobile devices.

“Our goal is to create an innovative mobile experience ecosystem for users of smart devices,” he said. “Linksys will enable us to build an even stronger foundation to build home connective experiences on top of.”

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Belkin plans to keep the Linksys offices at its current Irvine location.