Industrial Networking: Sixnet Joins Red Lion

Nov. 1, 2011
United Kingdom based Spectris, a supplier of instrumentation and control products, acquired Sixnet and is merging it with its Red Lion business unit.   

Spectris plc, a United Kingdom based supplier of instrumentation and control products announced that it has completed the acquisition of Sixnet LLC, a privately-held company based just outside Albany, N.Y. Sixnet is a manufacturer of industrial Ethernet switches, industrial wireless products and other networking and automation solutions for the industrial market, joins Red Lion in the Industrial Controls segment of Spectris plc. Terms of the acquisition were not announced.  

Sixnet (, which employs about 110 people, will be led by Red Lion President Mike Granby. Red Lion ( makes machine interface products (HMIs), process controls, panel meters sensors and software for a wide range of manufacturing and process industries. Sixnet’s hardened Ethernet networking switches complement those of Red Lion’s N-Tron division and the remote automation solutions complement Red Lion’s own product range, said Granby, while Sixnet’s cellular wireless portfolio for the machine-to-machine market provides a new area of business for Red Lion.

“The acquisition of Sixnet will enable Red Lion to provide a broader range of solutions to our customers, and expand both our global presence and our strategic business segments,” Granby said. “Sixnet’s solutions and 35 years of experience in the industrial space are a great addition to our team. Over time, we intend to share technologies within our solution portfolio, which will allow us to bring even more value to our customers.”

Sixnet primarily sells into the U.S. domestic market and good opportunities exist to expand overseas sales using Red Lion’s international distribution channels, particularly in China. Hilton Nicholson, president and CEO of Sixnet, said, “This acquisition is very synergistic and will expand channel and product opportunities worldwide.” As part of Spectris, Sixnet gains access to an industry leader that will support continued sales momentum and global expansion. The acquisition also provides an ideal platform to launch our new cellular automation and Ethernet products.”

Renee Robbins Bassett, [email protected], is managing editor of Automation World magazine.

For More Information
Scott Killian, Sixnet’s director of connectivity, provides his opinion industrial Ethernet in Automation World’s Oct. 2011 article on “Manufacturing and the ‘Internet of Things’”

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