Honeywell International (HON) generated $41 billion in sales for the fiscal year 2018. It has successfully solidified itself as a Fortune 100 company by expanding into numerous industries and offering varying products. Honeywell’s success is partially attributable to the numerous acquisitions that it has completed.

Honeywell’s five-year strategic plan from 2014 to 2018 called for $10 billion in mergers and acquisition spending. Without these subsidiaries, Honeywell’s operations would not be as diversified in regards to products, geographical location, or industry.

Key Takeaways

  • Honeywell made a number of acquisitions over the last decade, with its biggest ever happening in 2016.
  • During 2016, Honeywell made its biggest buyout, paying $5.1 billion for Elster Group. It also purchased Intelligrated for $1.5 billion that same year. 
  • Over the last few years, it’s made big bets on sensing and detection systems with various companies.
  • Of late, however, Honeywell has been more interested in downsizing, completing spinoffs of its homes and transportation systems businesses. 

Elster Group

As of 2016, Honeywell’s largest acquisition to date was of Elster Group from Melrose Industries PLC. The acquisition was completed for $5.1 billion. Honeywell was attracted to Elster Group’s high-growth product areas and geographical locations. 

Elster Group is a leading provider of gas, electricity, and water meters, including all associated communications and software solutions. It reported gross assets of approximately $2.8 billion in 2015 and employed almost 7,000 people.

EMS Technologies, Inc.

For $500 million, Honeywell purchased EMS Technologies. The deal expanded Honeywell’s position in the global scanning and mobility industry. EMS Technologies specializes in rugged handheld vehicle-based products. Items sold within the aviation department include rugged data storage, surveillance applications, antennas, and terminals. The acquisition was completed in 2011.

Intelligrated

Honeywell acquired Intelligrated in July 2016 for $1.5 billion in cash. Based in Ohio, Intelligrated employs over 3,000 individuals and is expected to report annual sales of around $900 million in 2016. 

Intelligrated is being utilized in Honeywell’s sensing and productivity solutions unit within the company’s Automation and Control Solutions division. Honeywell incorporated Intelligrated’s supply chain automation solutions within Honeywell’s current workflow performance processes.

Intermec

In 2013, Honeywell completed the acquisition of Intermec and spent $600 million in cash in the deal. Intermec provides value to Honeywell in numerous ways, including innovative products, engineering expertise, a broad global distribution channel and valuable technology in the AIDC industry. 

Intermec is a leading provider in computing on mobile devices, radio frequency identification services, printing solutions, and data collection products. Intermec will be integrated into Honeywell’s scanning and mobility division.

King’s Safetywear

For $338 million, Honeywell bought Singapore-based King’s Safetywear in 2011. The deal expands Honeywell’s customer base as KWS’s operations are strategically placed in high-growth areas. Its Otter, King’s and Oliver brands of steel-toe-capped boots are sold primarily in Australia, Asia, and Europe. Honeywell’s motivation for completing the deal was tied to bolstering its workplace safety equipment segment of the business.

Norcross

In 2008, Honeywell paid $1.2 billion to acquire Norcross Safety Products (NSP). NSP produces respirators, helmets, protective gloves and other protective gear for industrial workers as well as firefighters. Based in Illinois, Norcross became a piece in Honeywell’s automation and control solutions group.

RAE Systems

Honeywell announced in 2013 a definitive agreement to acquire RAE Systems Inc. The privately-held manufacturer makes gas and radiation detection systems. Its products include a full line of fixed and transportable sensing and detection devices sold to the government, emergency response sectors and industrial entities. At the time of the deal, RAE Systems products were utilized in over 120 countries. Founded in 1991 and based in California, RAE Systems was purchased for $340 million.

Sperian Protection

In September 2010, Honeywell completed the purchase of Sperian Protection, which manufactures personal protective equipment used in general industry, construction, fire services, and electrical safety segments. Honeywell paid $1.4 billion—or 1.5 times annual sales—for Sperian. Sperian specializes in head protection (sight, hearing, and respiratory gear) as well as body protection (clothing, gloves, footwear).

Xtralis

In early 2016, Honeywell entered into a definitive agreement to buy Xtralis, which is a global provider and industry leader of aspirating smoke detection, as well as security video analytics software. Honeywell paid $480 million in the deal. Xtralis’ customer base includes Fortune 500 companies, iconic sites, and infrastructures worldwide. Its products are used to protect data centers, historical buildings, airports, and manufacturing sites. Xtralis was headquartered in Ireland with 500 employees.

Going Forward

Honeywell has been relatively quiet on the acquisition front, in fact, the company has taken an opposite approach, completing various spinoffs. This comes as the company got a new CEO in 2017, Darius Adamczyk. Over the last couple of years, Honeywell spun off its transportation systems, homes, and ADI global distribution businesses last year.