Sonos currently offers both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice assistants on its range of smart speaker devices. And within a Q4 letter to shareholders today (Nov. 20), Spence added that "We do not plan to replicate the big tech 'ask anything voice services' but expect this acquisition will add to our customers’ ease of use and control as we continue to differentiate an end-to-end Sonos experience for our customers." He also said that the acquisition aligns with Sonos' external research showing that the most popular use for voice assistants is to access music.
Under the deal, Snips, which was founded in 2013, will remain based in France. It also has an office in Tokyo.
“The technology we have created has been validated by one of the leaders in consumer electronics," said Snips co-founder and CEO Dr. Rand Hindi. "I am thrilled that, joining an international company, Snips will continue its operations in France, helping French technologies succeed at an international level.”
Added Snips CTO Joseph Dureau: “We are thrilled to join forces with Sonos, a company that shares our core values, to continue our work and take private-by-design voice experiences to a truly global audience. We see an exciting future together as we integrate our IP and platform with Sonos, knowing it shares our dedication to building great experiences for customers without asking them to sacrifice privacy.”
Meanwhile, Sonos says it exceeded the financial targets it set at the time of its IPO in July 2018: Revenue increased 11% to a record $1.261 billion in fiscal year 2019, marking Sonos' third consecutive year of 10% or more increase in revenue. It also reported record Q4 revenue of $294 million for the quarter ended Sept. 28, representing 8% growth year-over-year, and a net Q4 loss of $30 million, compared to a loss of $2 million last year.