In the last year, the library RFID sector saw a significant reshaping of it's business landscape. The biggest development was the consolidation of three of the major global competitors —Bibliotheca RFID, IDG, and Intellident —into a single entity under the ownership of Equity One Partners. The feature “Global Consolidation: Three firms join to gain RFID synergies” in the July 2011 issue of Smart Libraries Newsletter, covered the details of the transaction.
The consolidation of the industry and the growth of Bibliotheca continues with the February 2012 announcement of its acquisition of Trion AG. Trion ranks as a major manufacturer of automated materials handling equipment for libraries. The company's products include the BiblioReturn automated station for the return of library materials, BiblioSorter system for sorting returned materials into bins based on status and location, BiblioLift for sorting and distributing materials to multiple floors of a library building, and the BiblioCheck M2 RFID-based self-check stations.
Trion AG, headquartered in Dübendorf, Switzerland, was established in 1999. Sven Carlson, the founder and CEO of Trion AG, joins Bibliotheca and will lead its team of partners.
The acquisition of Trion AG builds on existing business relationships. The company had previously been involved as a supplier of AMH equipment to each of the three organizations that now comprise the new Bibliotheca Group. This latest move not only increases the size of Bibliotheca Group, but also brings important new capacities into the company in terms of product design and manufacturing. While the full implications of this acquisition will play out over time, having ownership and exclusive access to the design and manufacturing resources should prove to be a valuable asset and should further strengthen its position in the industry.