Panasonic will pay $6.5 billion to acquire Blue Yonder

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Blue Yonder is a supply chain software firm based in the US. Panasonic is aiming to acquire the company, by paying around 700 billion yen ($6.5 billion) for it.

Nikkei reports that the move will be the biggest acquisition by Panasonic since 2011 when it paid $7.36 billion (about 800 billion yen) to acquire Sanyo Electric and Panasonic Electronic Works, which made them wholly-owned subsidiaries.

Blue Yonder uses artificial intelligence (AI) to predict the demand and delivery dates. Some of its customers include industry giants like Starbucks and Unilever.

Blue Yonder’s product

In the UK, Blue Yonder had helped Morrisons increase same-store sales by 2.6%, improved the on-shelf availability of products by 30%, and reduced store inventory by two to three days. Blue Yonder’s value is visible both in its ingenuity and in the numbers.

Panasonic bought a 20% stake in Blue Yonder for about 86 billion ($791 million) yen last year and gained a seat on its board because of the investment.

It is currently owned by two other shareholders (New Mountain Capital and Blackstone Group.) According to Nikkei, negotiations are in the final stages but there is a chance the deal could fall through. 

A wise and timely move

The acquisition would strengthen Panasonic’s supply chain management services and is timely since we have all seen what it’s like to deal with a pandemic where disruptions can cause chaos.

For instance, the world is dealing with a global semiconductor shortage that has affected automakers and other industries.

Many organizations want to be a part of the digital transformation going on currently and the technologies listed as essential in 2021 by Nikkei include cloud computing, 5G, AI, and integration.