Eaton Acquires Enclosure Maker Wright Line

Eaton Corp. said this morning that it has agreed to acquire Wright Line Holding, which specializes in energy-efficient enclosures for data center racks. The deal continues a trend in which the largest vendors of data center equipment are expanding their offerings through acquisitions. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Wright Line is based in Worcester, Mass., and provides customized enclosures, rack systems, and air flow management systems to store and power mission-critical IT data center electronics. The company has more than 350 employees, and over the last 12 months had sales of approximately $101 million.

Eaton Corporation is a diversified power management company with 70,000 employees and 2009 sales of $11.9 billion, and is a major player in the market for data center uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems and power distribution equipment.

“Broader, More Robust Solutions
“The acquisition of Wright Line significantly enhances Eaton’s ability to bring a broader, more robust set of solutions to help CIOs and IT managers address the challenges associated with today’s modern data centers,” said Jerry R. Whitaker, president-Americas Region, Eaton’s Electrical Sector.

“Combining Wright Line’s strong enclosure and air management portfolio along with Eaton’s market leading UPS and power distribution offerings creates a strong solution to help our customers deal with the challenges associated with energy efficiency, thermal management and capital deployment. We have been impressed with the Wright Line team, operations and channel to market, and look forward to working with them to act on our vision for growth in the business.”

Patented Heat Containment System
One of Wright Line’s notable products is a patented heat containment system which uses a “chimney” to remove air directly from a server cabinet. The Wright Line HCS captures heat exhaust from IT equipment to the top rear of the rack enclosure, were it is ducted to the data center’s air conditioning units through a ceiling plenum or hot air return. Here’s a two-minute video overview of Wright Line’s heat containment system:

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About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.

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