THE RESIDENTIAL STRUCTURED WIRING world went through a major consolidation earlier this year when Legrand North America acquired On-Q Technologies, which is best known in the market for its On-Q Home brand.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed; however, John Selldorff, president and CEO of West Hartford, Conn.–based Legrand North America, did say a new unit, On-Q/Legrand, will merge On-Q Technologies and Greyfox, formerly a unit of Pass & Seymour/Legrand. Greyfox is best known for its Category-5 intercom and Cat-5 video products.
February's merger whittles down the structured wiring market to a handful of major players: On-Q Legrand, Honeywell, General Electric, Leviton, and UStec.
“The only real players now besides us are Leviton and UStec,” says Selldorff, who adds that GE and Honeywell are large conglomerates with much broader interests. “Structured wiring is only a small percentage of GE and Honeywell's business,” he explains.
The new On-Q/Legrand unit will be headquartered in Harrisburg, Pa., and it will be headed up by Doug Fikse, former president of On-Q Technologies. Dan Tarkoff, former general manager at Grey-fox, will report to Fikse as vice president of engineering and product management. The two companies will continue to market under their existing brand names for the short run, with an eye toward marketing exclusively as On-Q/Legrand later this year.
The merger is somewhat confusing to sort out because Legrand North America took Greyfox from Pass & Seymour/ Legrand and merged it with On-Q, but at the same time, says Pass & Seymour, largely a wiring devices company, will market On-Q Legrand products.
Here's what builders need to know about the merger: On-Q Legrand will be the one brand name for residential structured wiring. On-Q Legrand, which includes On-Q and Greyfox, will market On-Q Legrand products to low-voltage dealers. And Pass & Seymour will sell wiring devices and accessories through electrical distributors, but for residential structured wiring it will market On-Q Legrand products.
“This makes it simpler for builders because they only have one product to choose from,” says Selldoff. “If they prefer the low-voltage dealer, that's fine; if they want to deal with an electrical contractor, then that's fine, too.”
According to Fikse, each company brings a specific strength to the table. On-Q is best known for its marketing support and ties to the home builder market. Greyfox has a well-staffed product development and engineering team. And Pass & Seymour has solid contacts with the electrical distribution channel.
“With Greyfox, we will now be able to develop products faster and own more intellectual property as well,” says Fikse, who adds that ever since the Leviton/On-Q merger fell through roughly a year ago, On-Q has been pursued by several companies.
Learn more about markets featured in this article: Harrisburg, PA.