Honeywell to buy Hand Held Products

Honeywell International announced today a definitive agreement to purchase Hand Held Products, a privately held automatic identification and data collection (apparently, there's a need for an acronym to describe this, AIDC) based in Skaneateles Falls, N.Y. (Skaneateles? Isn't that the name of a Beatles tribute band that plays everything with horns on the upbeat?). The purchase price? $390 million, for a firm that did $285 million in 2006. Hand Held's core products, according to a release, are bar code scanners and rugged (they have chest hair) mobile, wireless computers that are used for asset-tracking, logistics execution and supply chain management. The company will become part of Honeywell's Security Group within the Automation and Control Solutions business, assuming the deal passes regulatory review and closes as expected. In the statement, Honeywell honcho Ben Cornett noted, "Hand Held has demonstrated leadership in image-based technology, which is replacing laser-based legacy produts." Interesting. I'll be curious as to how the security folks make best use of this. Not sure what it means, but Honeywell's stock was is currently down about 70 cents on the news.