Innovate Products & Equipment to Merge with Eckhart to Become Supplier of High End Autonomous Systems

The two companies already sell similar and complementary technologies.


Eckhart sells a range of Industry 4.0 technologies.

Private equity firm Arsenal Capital Partners announced this week that it has invested in automation company Innovative Products & Equipment Inc. The firm said the news builds off its acquisition of EckHart, which it bought in December 2021.

Arsenal Capital said it will combine the two companies to build a leading automation solutions provider serving highly complex applications in high-growth end markets.

Innovative Products & Equipment Inc. is headquartered in Hudson, N.H. and provides automation and product & process development systems to blue-chip customers in specialized markets, with a focus on medical device and life sciences.

Eckhart is based in Warren, Mich. and designs, builds, and sells advanced industrial systems. Eckhart said its portfolio include Industry 4.0 technology such as autonomous guided vehicles (AGVs), collaborative robot systems, traditional robotics, assembly automation & simulation, 3D printing tool development & production.

“We are excited to work with the Innovative team to enhance our delivery of advanced, end-to-end automation capabilities for our customers,” said Andy Storm, CEO of Eckhart. “Rich, Eric, Dale, Kevin, and the rest of the Innovative team have developed a reputation in the medical device and life sciences markets for solving mission-critical issues for their customers, and we believe joining forces will position us well for our next phase of growth.”

A unified force

Together, Innovative and Eckhart will provide specialized automation solutions, including Factory of the Future (design simulation) services, single and multi-cell automation systems, and fully automated assembly lines, as well as automation technologies, including  AGVs, autonomous mobile robots (AMRs), thermal bonders, servo presses, and semi-automated tooling, the firm said.

“We are thrilled to partner with Arsenal, Andy, and the Eckhart team,” said Rich Brownstein, principal and co-president of Innovative. “The scale, capabilities, and resources that we can provide as a combined company will allow us to strategically accelerate growth as we support our global customer base with higher productivity, efficiency, and precision.

“Arsenal's reputation and experience investing in innovation-forward industrial technology and healthcare companies gives us confidence in the future growth prospects of our industry and company,” he added.

Sal Gagliardo, an operating partner of Arsenal, added, “Innovative is the latest example of our commitment to invest significant capital behind the substantial growth in automation and expand our presence in attractive, specialized end markets, such as medical device and life sciences.”

Since its inception in 2000, Arsenal has raised institutional equity investment funds totaling over $10 billion, completed more than 250 platform and add-on acquisitions, and achieved more than 30 realizations. The firm said it works with management teams to build strategically important companies with leading market positions, high growth, and high value-add. 

SVB Securities served as exclusive financial advisor and Ruberto, Israel & Weiner P.C. served as legal advisor to Innovative on this transaction.

Harris Williams LLC served as financial advisor and Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal advisor to Arsenal and Eckhart.

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Eckhart sells a range of Industry 4.0 technologies.

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