High-end smart home brand Savant acquires GE Lighting

From CNET: Savant Systems Inc., a Massachusetts-based maker of professionally-installed smart home systems, has struck a deal with General Electric to purchase the GE Lighting brand, the companies announced today. The venerable lighting manufacturer, which dates back to the invention of the incandescent light bulb well over 100 years ago, will remain headquartered at its Nela Park facilities in Cleveland, Ohio. Its 700 employees will transfer to Savant upon the transaction's completion, expected by mid-2020.

The sale is the latest development in GE's multi-year restructuring effort. In 2016, the conglomerate sold off its appliances division to the Chinese manufacturer Haier for $5.6 billion. Last year, GE sold its biopharma unit to Danaher Corp., a Washington D.C.-based medical technology company. That move rang in at $21 billion. No financials were disclosed for the GE Lighting sale, but the Wall Street Journal reports that it cost Savant "about $250 million."

"Today's transaction is another important step in the transformation of GE into a more focused industrial company," said GE Chairman and CEO Lawrence Culp, Jr. "Our GE Lighting colleagues will join a fast-growing leader in home automation that shares their passion for bringing the future to light. Together with Savant, GE Lighting will continue its legacy of innovation, while we at GE will continue to advance the infrastructure technologies that are core to our company and draw on the roots of our founder, Thomas Edison."

Savant, which sells smart home systems centered around security, entertainment, comfort, and lighting through a network of dealers and professional installers, says that the acquisition, which includes a long-term licensing deal for the GE Lighting brand, will broaden the reach of both companies.

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