Savant Systems, a company that helps design high-end personal smart home systems, will buy GE Lighting, the wing of GE behind its smart home products like C by GE. The deal includes the GE Lighting branding and its 700 employees.
GE Lighting has been around for 130 years focused on (as the name implied) lighting innovations. In more recent times, that included well-received smart home products, like C by GE smart bulbs. We named C by GE’s Hub-Less Light Switches as one of the CES innovations we were most looking forward too.
Now Savant is buying GE Lighting, brand name, employees, and all. If you’re not familiar with Savant, it specializes in creating custom high-end smart home solutions for the home. Rather than buy your own hub and piece together a smart home bit by bit, Savant does all the heavy lifting for you.
And by putting together a complete smart home solution, the company is better able to tie it all together in one elegant app, so everything just works right. It might seem like an odd pairing of companies, but Savant Founder and CEO Robert Madonna had this to say:
Savant’s mission from the start has been to create the number one smart home brand in the world, and I am confident that the acquisition of GE Lighting has moved us significantly toward that ultimate goal. We are committed to ensuring that GE Lighting’s long history of industry leadership continues, while bringing exceptional value and reliability to retail partners and consumers as the number one intelligent lighting company worldwide. Never before has connectivity, security, intelligent lighting and entertainment, all enjoyed within the comforts of home, been more top of mind with consumers.
The good news is, for the average consumer, it should be business as usual, at least to start. Savant’s purchase includes the GE Lighting brands and its employees, so the company can continue to make the products GE Lighting is known for and market using the familiar name.
Savant itself should benefit both from more tightly integrated smart home products it creates and controls and a broader reach to consumers who may not have been able to afford a Savant smart home system.
For its part, GE is continuing its trend of selling off its tertiary divisions to reduce its focus on core products. As GE Chairman and CEO H. Lawrence Culp, Jr. puts it:
Today’s transaction is another important step in the transformation of GE into a more focused industrial company. 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.
Naturally, as with any large merger, Savant and GE will have to go through the usual regulations. But Savant and GE say the transaction should close mid-2020.
Source: Savant and GE