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It looks like Suunto has been sold once again.
Amer is the owner of Suunto and has owned various sports brands over the years like Mavic, Enve, Suunto, Wilson, Arcteryx, Atomic, Wilson and others
The recent history of Suunto/Amer is one where most of Amer’s assets were acquired by MASCOT/ANTA Sports (Dec 2018). Soon after, its loss-making French subsidiary Mavic was sold to Regent. Some bizarre stuff then happened at Mavic as they soon went into receivership before eventually being bought and the brand saved.
Well, now it also looks like Amer sports has further divested the entire Suunto operation to a Chinese company called Haylou/Liesheng Technology, founded in 2015.
The Chinese buyer looks interesting and sells wannabee Apple Watch earbuds imaginatively called GT6 and W1. Its more interesting products are the RS4 & LS02 smartwatches which retail for about $60 and look a bit like an Apple Watch, the latter with flat pressers rather than a crown. Then there is the RS3 sports watch which physically resembles a high-end Fossil Wear OS Watch but with Coros-like menus and icons.
Even more interestingly, Haylou/Liesheng has links to the huge Xiaomi smartwatch company, which might bode well for Suunto watches on many levels ranging from latest tech components at affordable prices, cheaper and more agile development resources, through to distribution channels.
In other Suunto news.
Only yesterday we had the news that the Movescount web platform was finally closed down, this followed a protracted period that allowed Suunto to enable legacy watches like the AMBIT 3 to be configured via their SuuntoLink software. In that same two year period, the Suunto smartphone app has become much more stable and reliable as well as receiving a steady drip of new features. Suunto still has some form of online presence for their watch users via Sports Tracker, which I use to export my Suunto workouts from.
I’d never heard of Haylou/Liesheng, perhaps they are big in the Far East. IDK.
The Suunto brand is already reasonably strong in the Far East and perhaps Chinese ownership can further help that? Of course, the danger is that Suunto watches are cheapened by using its well-respected brand name on cheaper watches and with manufacturing being moved entirely to the Far East.
Let’s hope Suunto’s plans for new watches and new features will be re-doubled in 2022. I’m hopeful for a S7 Gen 2 in the second half of the year (no intel !) and there are certainly other things ‘bubbling’ as well.
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