News of the acquisition comes one day after a lawsuit filed by OtterBox against LifeProof for patent infringement was dismissed. OtterBox told the North Carolina Business Report that the acquisition was not related to the lawsuit or any settlement. Headquartered in San Diego, LifeProof also makes protective cases and accessories for smartphones and tablets.
Over the next 30 days, OttberBox will beginning incorporating the LifeProof brand into OtterBox’s product lineup. More information about product availability and alignment will be available after that period. OtterBox currently has about 650 employees worldwide, while LifeProof, which was founded in 2009, employs about 250 people, who the companies say will remain in their San Diego location “for the foreseeable future.”
“Our strategy is to utilize our combined brand momentum, and world-class talent to create a great customer experience that generates OtterBox brand ambassadors for life,” Thomas said in the acquisition announcement.
In addition to its extremely durable smartphone cases, which are designed to withstand drops, water immersion and debris, OtterBox also makes protective coverings for other mobile devices such as tablets, as well as screen protectors and accessories. LifeProof’s cases are designed for people with very active lifestyles (or who are especially accident prone around mountains, concrete and bodies of water). Both companies’ cases performed well when they were subjected to abuse in the name of consumer research by TechCrunch during CES in January.