Honeywell has signed an agreement to acquire a majority stake in Fiplex Communications, Inc., a Miami-based company that develops in-building communications systems, including bi-directional amplifiers (BDAs) that provide continuous and critical in-building radio coverage in challenging environments to improve the safety of first responders and building occupants.
The acquisition will expand the in-building connectivity and communications solutions that Honeywell provides to its customers. Fiplex’s solutions will become a platform of innovation for Honeywell wireless technologies.
The building communications industry is a fast-growing segment, largely driven by the adoption of enhanced fire codes. Its growth is expected to accelerate with the adoption of advanced technologies that will continue to change how building data is exchanged with various stakeholders.
“We are looking to reshape how communications and connectivity within buildings work. The addition of Fiplex’s products and software allows us to move toward creating the next generation of fire and life safety solutions to keep both building occupants and first responders safer,” said Vimal Kapur, president and chief executive officer, Honeywell Building Technologies. “The Fiplex team brings superior engineering talent and unique capabilities for wireless communications that will enable us to enhance our in-building communications offerings and complement our innovative, industry-leading solutions.”
According to a 2017 International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) survey by the Safer Buildings Coalition, 56 percent of fire departments have experienced a communications failure in a building during an emergency event, leaving firefighters and other first responders virtually stranded in these situations after losing communications. In-building communications systems, like those from Fiplex, enable first responders to stay connected throughout a building that may have a poor cellular signal due to Low-E glass windows, energy-saving cladding or wall composition, and even in underground areas such as car parks. In-building communications can also support occupant safety with timely, clear and accurate notifications of emergencies and recommended responses.
“Honeywell has long demonstrated leadership in the fire and life safety industry, and we are pleased to join their team,” said Matias de Goycoechea, chairman and chief technology officer, Fiplex. “We look forward to working with Honeywell to expand our technological advancements and to support the creation of better-connected buildings.”
Fiplex’s FLEX™ is a flexible and scalable in-building wireless platform that delivers the highest levels of performance, survivability and deployment efficiency to meet the requirements of public safety stakeholders. FLEX addresses performance and complexity challenges inherent to complying with stringent critical communications code requirements mandated by Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs) as well as economic barriers that encumber solutions providers from widescale penetration. The platform’s true mission-critical performance and software-defined configuration deliver better field deployment flexibility.
Fiplex’s FLEX products are UL2524 2nd edition listed with SGS, the only Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) approved by OSHA for UL2524.
Terms of the investment were not disclosed, and there is no change to Honeywell’s financial outlook as a result of the acquisition. The acquisition is pending customary deal closing conditions.