Linear’s headquarters in Carlsbad, Calif.

Linear, Carlsbad, Calif., a wholly owned subsidiary of Nortek Inc. has signed a merger agreement to acquire International Electronics Inc. (IEI), Canton, Mass. The agreement was unanimously approved by IEI’s board of directors, and, at press time, the sale was expected to close by May 29, 2007.

“We’re looking forward to being a part of Linear’s family of companies. There seems to be a natural fit there. Linear is in the access control business, but not quite in the space that we’ve built it, so we will complement their offerings,” said John Waldstein president and CEO of IEI. “[Linear] sells through similar channels — so it will provide heft and we will provide additional products for their product line.”

IEI manufactures electronic access control equipment and browser-managed security platforms used in residential and commercial security systems and wireless access control and fleet management systems for industrial mobile asset applications.

Linear provides engineered radio frequency products and is a supplier of wireless residential security systems, intercoms, garage door operators, gate operators, access controls, short and long range radio remote controls, medical/emergency reporting systems, home audio, video, voice, and data distribution products, central vacuum systems and structured wiring.

Linear, brings with it a sales force that can be used to leverage more sales and revenue for the combined companies. IEI’s access control equipment will complement Linear’s other security offerings and could create opportunities for future synergies.

“Certainly IEI’s presence in the access control market made it a great fit — they are prominent when it comes to standalone keypads and IP-based access control. When married to our products, it makes a good move for both of our organizations,” said Chuck Stevens, vice president of marketing at Linear.