Sierra Wireless, which manufactures hardware to connect devices to the Internet of Things, announced yesterday that is has agreed to buy European connectivity services provider MobiquiThings for €14 million ($15.7 million). The acquisition is expected to close in August.
Mobiqui is what’s known as a “mobile virtual network operator” or MVNO, meaning it relies on other network operators to provide physical infrastructure like cell towers. The MobiquiSIM card works with multiple local providers in countries around the world, so Mobiqui’s customers don’t have to deal with roaming charges and juggling different service providers — their devices are always on Mobiqui’s virtual network.
In recent years, Sierra has focused in on providing hardware modules for the Internet of Things and machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity, while also adding cloud services through its AirVantage platform to make it easier for businesses to integrate connected devices with other systems and equipment.
Now Sierra is expanding its managed services business, in part by purchasing companies with existing M2M subscriber bases. Mobiqui manages connected device fleets for more than 100 customers worldwide, with more than 100,000 individual wireless subscriptions.
This will be Sierra’s second acquisition this year in the mobile connectivity space, having already bought Wireless Maingate back in January.