News Briefs, November 2021

Nov. 2, 2021

ASSA ABLOY to Acquire Kwikset, Baldwin Owner

The announcement that ASSA ABLOY agreed to purchase the Hardware and Home Improvement (HHI) division of Spectrum Brands left everyone poised to see how the deal would shake out for the security industry. Answers should start to come by the end of the year.

The $4.3 billion acquisition, should it be completed, would bring well-known security brands Kwikset, Baldwin and Weiser under the same corporate umbrella as Yale, Medeco and Emtek.

In a statement, ASSA ABLOY says the acquisition is a “strategically important step” in developing its residential business in North America while also supplementing the company’s “reputation for innovation” on the commercial side. While reinforcing that the acquisition was “complementary” to the business, Rebecca Samuel, director of communications and branding for ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions, says the company would have nothing more to say until the deal was closed, which is expected by year’s end.

Analysts say the combination of Kwikset and Baldwin with ASSA ABLOY’s existing consumer-focused product lines, such as those from Yale and August Home, would create a residential access control juggernaut.

“The acquisition of Spectrum Brands’ Hardware and Home Improvement division by ASSA ABLOY brings together the two leading door lock-makers, in terms of market share, in the smart-home industry,” says Patrice Samuels, senior analyst at market research firm Parks Associates. “The collaboration between these teams should drive high innovation and better user experiences in the smart-door-lock industry and give ASSA ABLOY greater influence in setting industry standards.”

Larry Schwalb, security engineer with Philadelphia-based Houdini Lock & Safe, which has been in business for nearly 70 years, calls the acquisition a “game-changer.”

“What they are really after is the grade 3 hardware business — Kwikset and Baldwin — and getting into those big boxes,” Schwalb says. “One of the most popular things people need is locks and keys. Buyers want it so cheap that they will drive by four locksmiths and a hardware store just to get a deadbolt at a big-box store. People will buy a deadbolt for $20 and think that’s adequate for their home.”

Schwalb says the deal is somewhat reminiscent of when Stanley Works acquired Best Access Systems in 2002. However, he expects that ASSA ABLOY will keep many of the acquired brands in the corporate fold rather than sell them off.

“They’ll keep Kwikset; Kwikset is a huge asset,” he says. “They’ll keep Baldwin. Baldwin is another great asset. It’s a really interesting development.”

Joel Griffin, editor-in-chief of, and Paul Rothman, editor-in-chief of Security Business magazine, contributed to this report.

LifeSafety Power Receives LenelS2 Factory Certification

LifeSafety Power, an ASSA ABLOY company, has received LenelS2 factory certification and joined the LenelS2 OpenAccess Alliance Program (OAAP).

LifeSafety Power’s NetLink NL4 and NLX Network Communication Modules interface with OnGuard access control software versions 8.0 and 7.6 to provide advanced power management for enterprise access control systems. NetLink adds proactive monitoring and management capabilities to LifeSafety Power’s power systems, interfaces directly with the OnGuard platform and is engineered to handle applications that require network management. All power system alerts are now viewable in the OnGuard software.

“The ability to receive alerts and notifications on all power-connected systems through the OnGuard system brings greater intelligence to access control solutions,” says John Olliver, senior vice president of sales and marketing for LifeSafety Power. “For the end user and systems integrators, managed power improves the ability to pre-emptively assess power status for greater reliability and uptime.”

More info:

ONVIF Introduces Add-On Concept

ONVIF, a global standardization initiative for IP-based physical security products, announced the add-on concept, which extends the ONVIF conformance process to individual product features that can solve a specific use or end-user demand. This new concept enhances the capability of ONVIF to respond more quickly to market demands through increased interoperability and flexibility of choice for end users and systems integrators.

“The demand for more standardized solutions that can solve a wide variety of use cases is only continuing to grow,” says Leo Levit, chairman of the ONVIF Steering Committee. “As profile development can be a lengthy process, add-ons will allow ONVIF to more quickly offer additional capabilities and functionalities that carry the weight of ONVIF conformance to the market.”

An ONVIF add-on is one or more features that solve a particular use case; for instance, standardizing file formats when exporting video. To conform to an add-on, a product also must conform to an ONVIF profile. The add-on concept enhances the ONVIF profile model by enabling conformance claims to additional features and capabilities that aren’t already included in ONVIF profiles.

An ONVIF profile involves a fixed and comprehensive set of features that enable a functional product to be developed solely on the profile specification. Although the features included in profiles can’t be changed, add-ons are easily adaptable to evolving technology or specification requirements. Because an add-on supports version handling, it can be updated quickly to adjust for new technology additions or updates.

Extending ONVIF conformance tests to include optional add-ons ensures that an ONVIF-conformant device, such as an IP camera, and an ONVIF client, such as a video management system, that conform to an add-on will work together regardless of the manufacturer.

More info:

American Security Celebrating 75th Anniversary

American Security, the largest U.S. custom safe manufacturer, is holding a year of activities to commemorate its 75th anniversary, which began in September 2021.

“American Security’s success is a result of 75 years of innovation, customer excellence, accountability and teamwork,” says CEO Drew Meng. “Since 1946, American Security has been dedicated to designing and building the best performing high-security safes on the market for home and businesses.”

American Security holds more than a dozen technology and engineering patents and several industry firsts, including the first round door vault (1958), the first domestic-built U.L.-listed TL-15 and TL-30 composite safes (1989), the industry’s first retro-fit group II electronic safe lock (1990) and the first burglary and fire composite gun safe (1999).

Eight years ago, Donny McKay, the company’s vice president of marketing and engineering, helped American Security enter the smart safe market with the CashWizard smart safe.

“CashWizard makes it easier for operators of corporate-owned and multilocation franchise retailers to manage their safes and cash flow from afar,” McKay says. “Our smart safe solution reduces the number of touch points in the cash management process and saves our clients thousands in labor costs.”

More industry firsts and patents can be viewed on American Security’s website

American Security has many activities planned to engage customers, partners and employees, including a limited edition of diamond anniversary gun safes, which will debut at the 2022 Shot Show in Las Vegas. More events will be announced during the celebration that will conclude in August 2022.