Technology Industry Veteran Rob Lilleness to Lead the Company
Irvine, Calif. – June 13, 2017 – Richmond Capital Partners, a private investment firm based in Seattle, today announced the acquisition of Smartlabs Inc., parent company of Insteon®, an Internet of Things (IoT) technology company, and Smarthome®, an eCommerce superstore for home automation. As part of the acquisition, Rob Lilleness will assume the role of chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
Lilleness has built multiple successful high-tech businesses in digital media, mobile, software and consumer products. Most recently he served as president and Chief Executive Officer for Medio Systems, an ACCEL-backed company, which was acquired by HERE Technologies (a company currently owned by BMW, Daimler, Audi, Intel, and Tencent). Prior to Medio, Lilleness was president and COO of Universal Electronics (NASDAQ: UEIC). During his tenure at Universal, earnings more than tripled and the market capitalization grew from approximately $100 million to $500 million.
“I’ve been following Smartlabs almost from when they started. Their Insteon line remains arguably the strongest in the IoT space for controlling and communicating with electrical components in one’s home—whether via Amazon Alexa, smartphones, pads, or traditional wall plates and remotes,” said Rob Enderle, principal analyst, Enderle Group. “Additionally, Rob Lilleness, with his background helping to build Microsoft’s networking business, is one of the few people that has both the resources and experience to take Smartlabs where I’ve always believed they could go.”
One of the Largest Opportunities in IoT
According to a report published by Business Intelligence, by 2020 the U.S. residential market will have 193 million devices in connected homes with almost 50 percent of those devices in Smartlabs’ core electrical, lighting and sensor market. The global smart electrical control market is expected to grow to $10.8 billion over the next five years.
“There are two incredibly interesting IoT spaces in technology today—the car and the home,” said Lilleness. “Over the next five to 10 years, it is inevitable that a large portion of electrical nodes in the home will be ‘smart’ and addressable via the internet. With Insteon’s patented dual-mesh technology that communicates both wirelessly and via the home’s own electrical wiring, Smartlabs has the most reliable and scalable technology for electrical control and communication, which is critical to meet consumers’ expectations.”
Smartlabs headquarters will remain in Irvine, Calif., and the company plans to open a software development office in Seattle.
Insteon creates the world’s leading technology for electrical, lighting, and sensor communication and control. Its patented dual mesh technology delivers unmatched reliability that is used in more than 200 Insteon-powered products and enables consumers to control their homes from virtually any device or interface.
Smarthome is one of the world’s largest home automation retailers and an easy-to-use source for thousands of affordable lighting, security, and home entertainment products that the average “do-it-yourselfer” can safely install. Its team of product specialists strives to deliver the newest cutting-edge products at the best possible prices. Smarthome distributes products with award-winning INSTEON® technology.
Founded in 1992, Smartlabs, Inc., the parent company of Insteon and Smarthome, is the world's leading authority on electronic home improvement and automation.
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