Anixter Acquires 'PSIM Platform' Inner Range - "Heart of Our Technology Differentiation"

By: John Honovich, Published on Apr 30, 2018

Anixter Security has made a bold move, acquiring what it calls a PSIM platform as part of a $150 million deal, with Anixter's CEO Bob Eck declaring:

this physical security information management platform capability we've acquired, that sits right in the heart of our technology differentiation that we've talked about for years...

physical security information management platform that we don't have today and we think is very scalable across the organization. [emphasis added]

What is this PSIM? Who is Inner Range? And how competitive will Anixter be with PSIM at the heart of their technology differentiation?

Inside, we answer these questions.

Acquisition Overview - 3 Companies Australasia

Anixter partially disclosed the acquisition in their quarterly results:

definitive agreements to acquire security businesses in Australia and New Zealand for ~$151 million ... Combined, these businesses had trailing 12-month sales of USD ~$114 million and adjusted EBITDA of approximately USD ~$20 million.

IPVM has confirmed that these businesses are access control / 'PSIM' manufacturer Inner Range, Australia's Central Security Distribution (CSD) and New Zealand's Atlas Gentec.

Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News
Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News

Shared Ownership

While the combination of these 3 may seem strange, a 2014 announcement indicates that the 3 companies share ownership:

Inner Range & Central Security Distribution ownership share re-structure. The Group announced today that a 50% shareholding has now been acquired by a coalition of three senior management staff and New Zealand Company Atlas Gentech.

As such, we believe the businesses were acquired as a set.

Strengthens Anixter Australasia Distribution

Anixter was not a major distributor in Australasia and now is. CSD and Atlas Gentec are large distributors in their respective countries, setting up Anixter to be a major player in a region where they had not been.

Tri-Ed Acquisition Comparison

It has been nearly 4 years since the 2014 Anixter acquisition of Tri-Ed. Tri-Ed's revenue then was 5x that of CSD/Atlas/Inner Range is now. However, the later was much more profitable with an EBITDA margin (~18%) nearly 3x of Tri-Ed's 6% at the time of their acquisition.

Inner Range Manufacturer

Inner Range, which describes itself as "Designers & Manufacturers of Access Control & Security Systems", is globally a smaller player but fairly strong in their home region of Australasia.

In terms of management software, 'Integriti' is sold in three versions with the most basic 'access only' supporting a single controller (to 16 doors) with no 3rd party integrations, up to the 'Professional' version with no door count restrictions.

System integration modules are available for many western premium brands, including VMS integrations with Exacq, Milestone, Bosch, Pelco, March Networks, and Genetec. The platform also supports over 40 additional integration categories to elevator controls, intercoms, lighting/HVAC, fire alarms, and visitor management systems, among others. In general, the various integrations and scaling claims of the system are comparable to enterprise-grade, large-scale access platforms.

Unlike many North American access platforms, Inner Range panels include integrated intrusion alarm systems (up to 250 areas) with integrated dialers or communicators supporting most major monitoring formats. Rather than installing and integrating a 3rd party system into the access platform, Inner Range claims this functionality integrated by default. The image to the side shows a typical Inner Range enclosure can built out to support alarm, access control, communicators, and power management/backup batteries. 

PSIM Competitiveness?

While Inner Range does not call themselves PSIM (and who can blame them given how bad PSIM has done as a business), given their access and security capabilities plus video integration, they could be considered PSIM, at least loosely. But the true PSIM market is quite small, with players like CNL and Vidsys, tiny by even security manufacturer standards.

However, the upside is that if Anixter wants to scale Inner Range's offering 'across the organization', as Anixter's CEO said, there clearly is a lot of growth potential as Inner Range has limited reach in the Western world whereas Anixter is quite large in North America. This would not be in PSIM sales but more conventional access control / security management.

Compete Against Their Manufacturer Partners

Anixter is infamous for competing against their integrator customers (e.g., Does Anixter Sell Direct To End Users? YESAnixter / Bosch Sells Direct to AmazonAnixter Touts Selling to End Users, etc.). If they truly put Inner Range at the 'heart of their technological differentiation', they will be competing against their manufacturing partners too.

History of Distributors Competing Against Manufacturers

If Anixter really follows through with their PSIM / 'heart' plan, they will not be the first in this position. For example, ADI itself was formed to distribute Ademco products (i.e., Ademco Distribution Inc.) and Honeywell, the manufacturer, owns ADI, the distributor (though, with the ADI spin-out, that is changing and, e.g., Honeywell access control will be part of a separate company than ADI soon). And, of course, CSD and Inner Range have owned and distributed Inner Range for years. However, that was primarily done in a single geographic region where it was likely easier to provide support. This could be more challenging for Anixter if they genuinely start selling (and thereby supporting it) globally.

This is definitely a risk. Whether it works out remains to be seen.

Poll / Vote

5 reports cite this report:

Wesco Wins Anixter on Jan 13, 2020
Despite Anixter earlier arguing that Wesco's bid was inferior to CD&R's by nearly 10%, Anixter confirmed that they are taking Wesco's 3.1%...
Acquisitions - Winners and Losers on Dec 10, 2019
Most major manufacturers have been acquired over the last decade. But which have been good deals or not? In this report, we analyze the...
Australia Security Full Show Report on Jul 25, 2019
IPVM went to Australia attending the 3 days of the Australia Security Exhibition: This was held at the ICC Sydney, as shown below: In this...
2018 Mid-Year Surveillance Industry Guide on Jun 28, 2018
2018 has been an explosive year for the video surveillance industry, with the industry becoming a global political issue, with the expansion of...
IFSEC 2018 Final Show Report on Jun 20, 2018
IPVM attended the IFSEC show for the first time this year. The Chinese took over the show, centered on Hikvision, flanked by Dahua, Huawei and a...
Comments (22) : Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

BluB0X Alleges Lenel, S2, Software House Are Dinosaurs on Feb 13, 2020
BluB0X is running an ad campaign labeling Lenel, S2, Software House, Honeywell, AMAG and more as dinosaurs: In a follow-up email to IPVM,...
Verkada Raises $80 Million, Triples Valuation To $1.6 Billion on Jan 30, 2020
Verkada's rocketing valuation continues. 9 months ago, they got a half-billion valuation and now they have announced more than triple that, at $1.6...
Brivo Business Profile 2020 on Jan 27, 2020
Brivo has been doing cloud access for more than 20 years. Is the 2020s the decade that cloud access becomes the norm? CEO Steve Van Till recently...
Wesco Wins Anixter on Jan 13, 2020
Despite Anixter earlier arguing that Wesco's bid was inferior to CD&R's by nearly 10%, Anixter confirmed that they are taking Wesco's 3.1%...
Anixter Resisting Takeover From Competitor, Bidding War Emerges, Wesco Wins on Jan 13, 2020
Mega distributor Anixter is going to be acquired but by whom? Initially, Anixter planned to go private, being bought by a private equity firm....
End User Buying Axis At Prices Better Than Axis Gold on Jan 10, 2020
IPVM recently found an integrator contract with an end-user that guaranteed the end user could buy Axis products at a price / discount better than...
Resideo CEO To Step Down on Dec 03, 2019
Resideo's CEO, Mike Nefkins, is stepping down, just 18 months after being brought in to lead the now plagued spin-out. Inside this note, we...
UTC Really Screwed Up The Interlogix Shut Down on Sep 27, 2019
UTC has made many mistakes in security over the years, however, the shutting down of Interlogix is one of the biggest screwups in industry history....
Interlogix Shutting Down on Sep 20, 2019
Interlogix is shutting down, as UTC has confirmed to IPVM in a statement about their "plans to wind down" the once leading brand. Inside this...
ACRE Acquires RS2, Explains Acquisition Strategy on Apr 19, 2019
ACRE continues to buy, now acquiring RS2, just 5 months after buying Open Options. One is a small access control manufacturer from Texas, the...

Most Recent Industry Reports

USA ICI Elevated Skin Temperature Detectors Examined on Apr 06, 2020
Infrared Cameras, Inc. (ICI) is aiming to help slow the spread of COVID-19 with "pinpoint accurate skin temperature measurement" using their...
Trade Groups Request NDAA Blacklist Delay Citing Coronavirus on Apr 06, 2020
Two trade groups representing government contractors have asked Congress to delay implementation of the NDAA's 'blacklist' clause from this August...
Coronavirus Hits Manufacturers, Standing Now, Worse To Come on Apr 06, 2020
Coronavirus is hitting security manufacturers, though overall modestly for now, with worse expected to come, new IPVM survey results...
FLIR New Coronavirus Prioritized Temperature Screening Camera Examined on Apr 03, 2020
FLIR has announced a new series of thermal cameras "prioritized for entities working to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 virus", the A400/A700...
ADI Branch Burglary on Apr 03, 2020
A security systems distributor branch is an odd target for burglary but that happened this week at ADI's Memphis location. Vehicle Smash &...
Hikvision And Dahua Now Blocked From Conforming ONVIF Products on Apr 03, 2020
Dahua and Hikvision, sanctioned for human rights abuses, are now blocked from submitting products for ONVIF conformance, a blow to the mega China...
YCombinator AI Startup Visual One Tested on Apr 02, 2020
Startup Visual One, backed by Silicon Valley's powerful Y Combinator, aims to be "Your 24/7 Watchman" with advanced analytics and object...
Free IPVM Memberships For The Unemployed on Apr 02, 2020
IPVM is giving 3-month free memberships (regular price $99) for the unemployed, no questions asked. To get it, just contact us, your request...
Dahua Faked Coronavirus Camera Marketing on Apr 01, 2020
Dahua has conducted a coronavirus camera global marketing campaign centered around a faked detection. Now, Dahua has expanded this to the USA,...
Video Surveillance Trends 101 on Apr 01, 2020
This report examines major industry factors and how they could impact video surveillance in the next 5 - 10 years. This is part of our Video...