Wristwatch maker Fossil Group has agreed to acquire Misfit, maker of wearable activity trackers for $260 million. The company said it plans to integrate Misfit’s technology into products resembling traditional watches as early as next year. The news was formally announced by Fossil Group in a blog post Thursday afternoon, where it also said that the $260 million price tag will be covered by a combination of cash on hand and bank debt. 

Founded in 2011, Misfit makes devices like the Shine, an inexpensive wearable fitness and sleep tracker that the company claims has a 6-month battery life. In September, Misfit introduced the \”Flash\”, a lower-priced version of its flagship Shine health wearable. The new version has the same look and functionality of the older Shine device but is made of a durable soft touch plastic instead of the Shine\’s anodized aluminum. The lower price of the plastic casing allows the Flash device to sell for $50 versus the Shine’s $100.

Greg McKelvey, Chief Digital Officer Fossil Group, said in a statement: “With the acquisition of Misfit, Fossil Group will be positioned to win with the connected consumer”, “Our world-class design and global distribution, combined with Misfit’s technology platform, creates a significantly advantaged, multi‐brand and global wearable technology business poised to drive the convergence of fashion and technology.” 

Founded in 1984 and based in Richardson, Texas, Fossil Group (formerly Fossil Inc.) is a leading designer, marketer and distributor company that specializes in consumer fashion accessories. It brands include Fossil, Relic, Abacus, Michele Watch & Now Coach NY and Zodiac Watches. In addition, the company also makes watches for brands such as Adidas, Emporio Armani, Armani Exchange, Diesel, DKNY, Burberry and Marc by Marc Jacobs.
The deal, which is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approval, is expected to close before the end of fiscal 2015. 

Image credit: The Verge