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RunKeeper acquired by ASICS for $85m

Fareed Mosavat, Chas Wagner, and Jason Jacobs looked at support tickets at Runkeeper.Aram Boghosian / Boston Globe/Boston Globe

One of Boston’s original mobile success stories is now part of a big sports-apparel company.

Runkeeper, supplier of a smartphone app that tracks users’ jogging routes via GPS, has been purchased by Japanese shoe brand ASICS.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but ASICS said Runkeeper would become a subsidiary. ASICS added it would benefit from both Runkeeper’s technology and “a management team with extensive experiences in this field.”

In a blog post, Runkeeper CEO and founder Jason Jacobs said that little would change for the app’s users.

“Not only will the Runkeeper product carry on, but we will be able to move even faster. We will be able to pursue the vision we’ve set out to pursue all along, with a partner that can bring many resources to bear that we couldn’t fathom having access to on our own,” he wrote.


Founded in 2008, Runkeeper had raised about $11.5 million from investors, including Boston venture firms Spark Capital and Launch Capital. But its last round of funding came in 2011.

Sports apparel companies have been snapping up Runkeeper’s competitors for the past few years, which set up the Boston-based app developer as a likely buyout target.

In August, Adidas paid $240 million to acquire Austria-based Runtastic. A year ago, Under Armour said it would pay $475 million for MyFitnessPal, a San Francisco startup that attracted about 80 million registered users, and $85 million for Denmark-based Endomondo, which had about 20 million registered users.

Runkeeper recently said its registered-user count had reached 50 million. But the company also had struggled to find a way to make money from that user base, and cut about 30 percent of its staff in layoffs last fall as it switched its focus from adding users to growing its sales.

Last month, Runkeeper announced it would push toward its own fusion of fitness data and sportswear by selling its own branded clothing online. “Personalization has become a really powerful way to better serve the consumer, but also to sell more products,” Jacobs said at the time.