Mergers and acquisitions related to the Internet of Things (IoT) are “shattering records”, according to 451 Research. (See also: What is the Internet of Things?)

Buyers so far this year have spent $14.8 billion (£9.8 billion) to purchase 39 IoT-related companies, surpassing the $14.3 billion spent for 62 such companies in all of 2014, which itself was a record-breaking year.

© iStock/rzoze
© iStock/rzoze

Semiconductor-related acquisitions have driven the bulk of spending so far in 2015, with ARM, Intel and NXP each announcing two or more deals largely driven by IoT-related position taking, said 451 Research.

The largest deal of the period, NXP’s $11.8 billion acquisition of Freescale Semiconductor, was positioned as a consolidation of leaders that will focus scale and reach on key IoT growth markets led by connected cars. Other acquirers announcing acquisitions in 2015 include Amazon, ARM, Brocade, PTC, Silver Spring Networks and British Gas.

“While the Internet of Things is still in its infancy in terms of industry adoption, the deal-making accelerates unabated, and we see no end in sight. The IT service and infrastructure leaders of the future will require broad and deep competencies in IoT, and those bets are being made now," said Brian Partridge, vice president of the 451 Research mobility team. 

“The 2015 numbers left little time to even question our prediction that market forces would accelerate deal activity beyond 2014.”

For the full year 2014, IoT M&A spending increased fortyfold from 2013’s levels to $14.3 billion – almost eight times the total spent by acquirers in 2012 and 2013 combined.

The IoT M&A data comes from 451 Research’s M&A KnowledgeBase, a database of more than 41,000 technology merger and acquisition transactions across 650 industry segments.