Google has acquired the French startup FlexyCore, which is best known for its Android performance boosting solution DroidBooster. Terms of the deal remain undisclosed, although France’s L’Expansion, which first reported the acquisition, has pegged the price at $23 million.
Google has confirmed the purchase, citing FlexyCore’s strong team and “expertise in building software to optimize Android device performance”. In fact, the startup’s team has already been integrated with Google’s Android team, while the acquisition has been a year in the making, having started last September and been concluded earlier this month, apparently. That’s quite a protracted acquisition, even by the slowest of European standards, and especially for what looks in-part like an acqui-hire.
Five year-old FlexyCore’s main product, DroidBooster, is designed to boost the performance of Android devices, in terms of speed and battery life — both of which are crucial to the competitiveness of any modern-day smartphone platform as device makers compete in the performance arms race associated with our always-on digital lives. It claims to be able to boost the performance of ARM-based devices by up to ten times, and does this by improving the performance of an Android handset at build-time by “generating highly optimized ARM binary from Dalvik code”.
The technology was being targeted by FlexyCore at both high and low end devices, citing handset makers’ ability to introduce new Android features or extend existing ones. It was also being pitched as a way to bring “high end performance to low end devices”, enabling Android to “break into the mass market”, which of course it has since done. However, an essential growth market for Google’s OS is emerging markets, and anything that can push high end performance to ever lower price points is bound to ring the cash registers at Mountain View.
FlexyCore was originally supported by french state-backed incubator Emergys, and has raised 1.5 million Euros from Paris-based VC Sochrastem, so if L’Expansion’s $23 million price is on the nail, this looks like a pretty decent exit for a French company, presuming all previous funding was disclosed, and including any earn-outs.