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Peloton Draws Takeover Interest From Amazon and Nike

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Peloton Interactive Inc. is attracting interest from potential suitors including Amazon.com Inc., the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Shares of the home fitness company surged as much as 43% in extended trading Friday.

Amazon has been speaking to advisers about a potential deal, the newspaper said. There’s no guarantee the tech giant will follow through with an offer or that Peloton, which is working with its own advisers, would be receptive to an approach. Other potential suitors are circling, the WSJ reported, though no deal is imminent.

Nike Inc. is also considering a separate bid for Peloton, attracted by the drop in Peloton’s share price, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Neither Nike nor Amazon have held direct talks with Peloton, the FT reported.

Amazon and Peloton declined to comment to both papers and Nike didn’t immediately respond to the FT’s request for comment.

Peloton was a darling of the pandemic as people at home during lockdowns turned to its fitness bikes and online classes for exercise. But shares have fallen more than 80% from their high a year ago as the gradual easing of pandemic restrictions fueled concern that growth would slow. Activist investor Blackwells Capital LLC last month issued a letter demanding the company fire co-founder and Chief Executive Officer John Foley and pursue a sale. Blackwells said in the letter that potential buyers could include Apple Inc., Walt Disney Co., and Nike.

The company’s public image also took a hit in December, when HBO Max’s “Sex and the City” reboot killed off a Peloton-riding character.

Amazon’s interest may be linked to its effort to gain a greater role in health care, as well as the potential to market to Peloton’s almost 3 million subscribers. The e-commerce giant in 2020 introduced its wearable Halo products to compete with Google-owned Fitbit and other fitness devices.

Peloton’s shares jumped to a high of $35.25 in extended trading after closing Friday at $24.60 in New York — below its September 2019 initial public offering price of $29.

–With assistance from Spencer Soper and Mark Gurman.

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