Amazon Mulls Purchase Of Beleaguered Peloton
Peloton Interactive Inc. has drawn interest from potential buyers including e-commerce giant Amazon.com Inc., according to a person familiar with the matter, as the exercise bike maker struggles to maintain pandemic-fueled growth.
Photo Insert: A Peloton branch
Shares of Peloton surged 30% in extended trading on the news, which comes days after activist investor Blackwells Capital urged the company's board to put it up for sale.
Amazon is exploring an offer for Peloton and is speaking with advisers about whether and how to proceed, a source said. Peloton has not yet decided whether it will explore a sale, according to the source. Peloton did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment, while Amazon declined to comment.
Peloton sales boomed during COVID-19 lockdowns, with many snapping up home fitness equipment. But its fortunes began to fade as vaccinations increased, gyms reopened and rivals offered competitive products.
In November, it hinted that demand for its exercise bikes and treadmills was slowing faster than expected, and its market capitalization since then has shrunk to about $8 billion from a peak of nearly $52 billion in early 2021. If the stock's gains hold on Monday, Peloton could reach the $10 billion market-capitalization threshold.
Last week, Blackwells Capital called on the board of Peloton to remove CEO John Foley immediately, accusing him of deals that set high fixed costs and for holding on to excessive inventory, while misleading investors about the need to raise capital.
Blackwells criticized Foley for hiring his wife as a key executive and committing to a 300,000-square-foot, 20-year lease for office space in New York, among other things.
The investment firm, run by Jason Aintabi, has also urged the board to put the company up for sale to a buyer like Walt Disney Co., Apple Inc., Sony Group or Nike Inc., Reuters reported on Sunday.