iRobot Corp. (NASDAQ: IRBT), a leader in delivering robotic technology-based solutions, today announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock repurchase program. Under the program, iRobot may purchase up to $25 million of its common stock beginning March 28, 2013 and ending March 27, 2014.
According to Colin Angle, chairman and chief executive officer of iRobot, the Board’s authorization of a share repurchase program reflects the companies confidence in the health and long-term outlook of the company. “With a strong balance sheet and cash flows, we believe we can take advantage of current market conditions to buy back our shares while maintaining the flexibility to make strategic investments in our future, ” Angle said.
As of February 11, 2013, iRobot had 27,872,850 shares of common stock outstanding. According to Morningstar data 64.19 percent of iRobot shares are owned by institutions, 37.04 percent of shares are owned by funds and 4.23 percent by insiders.
|Credit: Google Finance, IRBT share price 2006-2013|
What might be the motive for iRobot to initiate a share repurchase program. One likely motive might be to increase share value for its share owners, by reducing the total number of shares outstanding. This could also protect the company from unfriendly takeover. There have been some speculations about a strategic takeover by Google to become one of the largest suppliers of robotics in the world.