Mars Petcare, which is a subsidiary of candy bar maker Mars, has acquired Whistle, a startup that makes smart dog collars to track a pet’s location and fitness.
No numbers have been revealed, but people with knowledge of the matter said it was about $117 million. Belgium-based Mars Petcare owns pet food brands, such as Pedigree and Iams, as well as Banfield, the world’s largest veterinary service with more than 800 pet hospitals.
“We are excited about the opportunity our investment will bring us to in this new area of pet care technology,” the company said in a statement.
The connected-collar is often touted as “Fitbit for pets,” enabling users to track their pets’ whereabouts and fitness levels. On the other hand, it will enable Mars to collect pet-behavior data on a large scale, and eventually use that information to develop new pet products.
Whistle’s investors include DCM Ventures, Nokia Growth Partners, basketball all-star Carmelo Anthony and rapper Nasir “Nas” Jones.