Why Savant’s Acquisition of LiteTouch Matters
Apple-based automation manufacturer Savant joins other major control players by adding its own lighting control platform.
Source: Commercial Integrator
The pieces of the puzzle seem to be coming together for Savant Systems, an automation manufacturer known for its Apple-based systems.
The Osterville, Mass.-based company quickly made a name for itself in the residential integration world since launching in 2005, but more recently has also set sights on the commercial market. So Savant opened a magnificent commercial showroom in Manhattan and hired a general manager for its commercial division.
Savant has filled in another gap, by acquiring lighting control solutions manufacturer LiteTouch. “We were the last major control player without its own lighting control,” said Savant general manager Jim Carroll in an interview with sister publication CE Pro. Savant already offers its own automation systems (naturally) as well as its own audio/video distribution and control products. Lighting control, he says, “is the last big missing piece.”
And what better way to enter the field than with the acquisition of a 30-year old company that, Carroll says, created the first solid-state lighting control system? “As a lighting control company, it has a very strong programming platform that’s easy to configure, which really attracted us to them.”
Carroll says Savant wasn’t just surveying LiteTouch’s lighting-control products, but its entire portfolio including designer keypads, sensors and load control for energy management.
We pick up this whole family of keypads, which aesthetically is a tremendous asset,” Carroll notes. “There are a lot of jobs we do that don’t have lighting control, but that still need keypads.
Beyond products, though, LiteTouch reaches channels that Savant does not, including electrical contractors and lighting specifiers. “The channels line up very well,” he says.
Savant already integrates with several lighting control systems — including LiteTouch, Lutron, Powerline Control Systems (PCS), Rako (Europe) and Vantage Controls, a Legrand company — enjoying a particularly cozy relationship with Lutron, the overwhelming leader in the category with a 38 percent market share among home systems integrators.
Carroll says Savant will continue its aggressive support of these and other vendors. The company puts considerable effort into the integration with thirdparty subsystems, allowing integrators to basically push a button to migrate programming into the Savant platform, according to Carroll.
Savant, as well as its dealers, appreciates the variety of subsystems in the partner program and the Massachusetts-based company has no plans to pull back its development in lighting-control integration, Carroll says.
Savant bought LiteTouch from Nortek Inc., which had acquired the Salt Lake City-based lighting company in 2007 and blended it into Panamax, maker of power management solutions.
Source: Commercial Integrator
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