Nortek Security & Control merges with Core Brands

NSC president: Integration of the two companies should be mostly complete by year’s end
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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

CARLSBAD and PETALUMA, Calif.—Nortek Security & Control (NSC) and Core Brands yesterday announced a merger.

Mike O’Neal leads the new combined company, operating under the NSC brand, as its president. The companies are currently being integrated, O’Neal told Security Systems News, and the process should be mostly finalized by the end of the year.

Nortek Security & Control provides smart connected devices and systems for residential, security, access control, and digital health markets. The company’s brands include 2GIG, GoControl, Linear, Mighty Mule and Numera. Core Brands focuses on control, audio, power management, connectivity and video distribution through its brands ELAN, SpeakerCraft, Gefen, Niles, Panamax, Proficient, Furman, Sunfire and Xantech. Both companies are subsidiaries of Melrose Industries, which purchased Nortek Inc. in 2016.

The merger is “part of a larger plan that Melrose has … to help reposition all of the businesses as a stronger competitor, long term, in the smart home, security space,” O’Neal said.

“We’ve consolidated into one organizational unit under access control, audio video, home control, security—all of it,” O’Neal said. All of these items, within the Internet of Things, fit into residential, small-to-medium businesses, and commercial environments, he noted. “Rather than have the Nortek companies … trying to do all of this independently, the thinking is we leverage our engineering resources and create a singular view of that interconnectivity and how those systems are going to work in this future smart home or future smart business.”

O’Neal said that he hopes this will help Nortek Security & Control move faster and work better with its software partners, such as Alarm.com.

“Pulling together the engineering and the product management capabilities to be able to think about the business in a broader context and not in a more … narrow perspective,” O’Neal said. “We can make the best garage door opener in the world, but if it doesn’t connect, then it’s going to have very limited life. The same thing will be true of any of the products that we sell today.”

Core Brands president, Joe Roberts, is now NSC’s executive vice president of marketing and innovation, responsible for driving product vision across the new company. “The market is demanding a broader range of solutions that work better together across product categories, and this is a major focus of our innovation,” Roberts said in a prepared statement. “In particular, our 2GIG and ELAN integration creates opportunities that perfectly address the connected smart home market and the evolving needs of our customers.”

Being under the same parent company has made the companies’ integration easier because of commonalities in processes, such as financial management, legal management and manufacturing, O’Neal noted.

“The significant thing here, for us and for everyone, is that this entire market that we’re dealing with is going to morph significantly in the next five or so years, and we need to be prepared to move with the market wherever it goes,” he said.

O’Neal continued, “We have the capabilities, we have a significant number of engineers, a factory, distribution, some good brands, lots of good stable products and I think this is part of preparing us for being a stronger competitor as that market shifts and as people … and customers start to demand more from their smart systems.”