Blippar to Acquire Layar

Argos Blippar AR Catalogue
A Blippar AR campaign for Argos

Qualcomm-backed AR (Augmented Reality) company Blippar has reportedly acquired Layar, according to an internal memo written by Blippar co-founder and CEO Ambarish Mitra which has been leaked to TechCrunch.

We reached out to Blippar, and were given the following statement from Mitra: “We cannot comment on market speculation at this stage, but Blippar is dedicated to growing the global marketplace for immersive, engaging content, and part of this strategy may include acquisitions later in the year.”

The memo names 19 June as the planned date for the official announcement, and Blippar seems to be standing by that – we were told further information will be disclosed next week.

Blippar has recently made an effort to distance itself from the augmented reality label and rebrand as an image recognition company, but it actually has a very similar offering to Layar. Both enable physical assets – whether magazines, posters or product packaging – to be overlaid with virtual content when scanned using the relevant app, and both offer brands and publisher a choice between full-service creation of campaign or a self-service tool.

At this stage, its difficult to ascertain what Blippar would gain from the acquisition, beyond consolidation of the crowded AR market. It looks as though well know more next Thursday, 19 June.