Walmart strikes $2.3bn deal to buy smart TV company Vizio

US-based retail giant Walmart is moving into the TV game after striking a $2.3bn deal to buy smart TV outfit and manufacturer Vizio.

Walmart said the acquisition, which includes Vizio’s smart TV operating system SmartCast, will allow it to offer customers new TV and in-home entertainment and media experiences, as well as create opportunities for advertisers.

Vizio was founded in 2002 and has seen its SmartCast service grow to more than 18 million active accounts, with over 500 direct advertising partners, according to the company. It also operates WatchFree+, a live and on-demand ad-supported service

The supermarket chain also expects the deal will accelerate its US media business, Walmart Connect, by leveraging Vizio’s advertising solutions business.

Vizio’s board of directors has unanimously approved the transaction with the company retaining the right to terminate the transaction within a 45-day period, subject to the terms and conditions of the merger agreement.

Seth Dallaire, EVP and chief revenue officer, Walmart US, said: “We believe Vizio’s customer-centric operating system provides great viewing experiences at attractive price points.

“We also believe it enables a profitable advertising business that is rapidly scaling. Our media business, Walmart Connect, is helping brands create meaningful connections with the millions of customers who shop with us each week. We believe the combination of these two businesses would be impactful as we redefine the intersection of retail and entertainment.”

William Wang, chief executive officer of Vizio, added: “Walmart’s approach is aligned with Vizio’s mission and vision, and our technology will help bring a scaled, connected TV advertising platform to Walmart Connect. This transaction delivers immediate and compelling value to Vizio stockholders and is a true testament to the hard work of the entire Vizio team.”

Read Next