History of the Group

The origins of the Humanetics Group can be traced back to the 1940s, when Samuel Alderson created the first anthropomorphic test device - or crash test dummy, as we commonly know them - to test aircraft ejection seats, aviation helmets and pilot restraint systems. The technology of these early dummies provided the foundation for creation of automotive crash test dummies in the early 1960s. Since that time, virtually every crash test dummy in the world was manufactured in one of our facilities. Throughout our history we have developed dozens of new dummy types including an entire family of child and female dummies, as well as side, rear and frontal impact models and even autonomous vehicle dummies. We offer testing and calibration equipment and services and have created a variety of virtual simulated testing software models for each dummy type.


Diversification and growth

Humanetics has experienced tremendous organic growth through the expansion of its innovative crash safety testing solutions and global expansion. The company has also looked outside of its immediate market to grow through an expansive multi-national mergers and acquisitions strategy. We have acquired multiple industrial sensor developers in Boston, Michigan and the UK to support both the internal sensor needs of Humanetics and to serve third-party customers in the energy, medical and aerospace sectors. We have expanded into high-tech fiber optic sensing applications, with the acquisition of market leader, UK-based Fibercore. We acquired two innovative, high-tech Austria-based businesses allowing us to expand our portfolio of passive and active safety testing equipment with the most advanced technology available in the market. We’ve driven deeper into the fiber sensor market with the purchase of precision laser experts, Optek Systems, located in the laser technology hub in Oxford, England.  


Investment and corporate structure

The corporate structure has undergone several changes as well. Honeywell acquired First Technology Safety Systems (the predecessor to the current Humanetics business) in 2005. A year later, Honeywell sold First Technology Safety Systems to London-based private equity firm, HG Capital. Wynnchurch Capital acquired the business in 2009. In 2011, two of the leaders in the crash safety market - First Technology Safety Systems and Denton ATD - combined forces and became known as Humanetics, resurrecting the name first used by the company in the 1950s. Golden Gate Capital acquired the business in 2013, implementing an aggressive growth strategy that resulted in the company doubling in size. Bridgepoint, the current owners, acquired the business from Golden Gate in 2018 and have continued to invest in both the development of new technologies and products as well as strategic acquisitions.

In 2020, to accentuate our global reach, financial strength and market leadership positions, we branded the entire organization as the Humanetics Group and created a shared brand identity across operating companies. While the company has gone through multiple changes in corporate ownership, the dedication of the team to the mission of saving lives has never changed.

The Humanetics Group and its legal entity, Safety Technology Holdings Inc, is owned by Bridgepoint EU. Bridgepoint is a major international private equity group focused on investing in market-leading businesses, working with management teams to create and realize value within its portfolio companies.