As we went to press on April 12th, 15 months after the name change from Hall Research, and just four months after moving to Dallas, Hall Technologies announced an equity investment by Michigan-based Gun Lake Investments (GLI) the non-gaming economic development arm of the Match-E-BeNash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians, or Gun Lake Tribe.
GLI’s CEO, Monica King, now serves as a chairperson on the board of Hall Technologies.
Before the acquisition, Hall Technologies had been on a steady growth path since 2018, when Blackford Capital acquired the majority stake. When Hall’s founder, Ali Haghjoo, retired in 2020, Jason Schwartz joined the company as CEO. In 2021 Schwartz led the rebranding of the company to Hall Technologies, established a new leadership team of Matt Kingsley as CFO, and industry veterans Hal Truax as the Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Ken Eagle as the Vice President of Technology, and launched a suite of products based on its new HIVE Cloud Control, an IoT-based control platform.
The Hall Technologies team and product roadmap will reportedly continue under the new ownership. In an exclusive interview, Schwartz told my colleague Cindy Davis, content director of AV Technology, that both the new leadership team and the company roadmap, which is heavily based on the rollout of HIVE and other collaboration products, made the all-in acquisition attractive to GLI. While the details are private, the cash infusion enables the Hall team to grow the company and go to market exponentially faster.
This is a substantial influx of resources at a time when AV is being leaned on as never before. Reportedly GLI’s approach to investments is unique relative to other private equity investors— their people-first mantra and long-term approach align well with Hall’s strategy and culture.
Almost immediately after the acquisition was announced, Hall exhibited at the Indian Gaming Tradeshow & Convention hosted by National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) and held at the Anaheim Convention Center. This 35-year-old show is the largest gathering of tribal leaders and casino executives in the country.
Building on Hall’s strong 38 years of product innovation, several new product announcements have been made, including the all-in-one Apollo Technology Room Kit and the VERSA 4K video over IP solution joining HIVE and other products in an accelerating roadmap that will benefit from the GLI relationships.
“We could have continued to grow our HIVE product roadmap slowly,” Schwartz said in speaking to Davis, “There is a need for what we developed, and it’s differentiated significantly from what our competitors can do—the time is now for us to advance. The best way to explain it is that we are now a fully fuel-injected sports car poised to accelerate,” he concluded.