Alarm Detection Systems expands outside of Midwest

Safe Systems purchase brings second monitoring center and 10,000 accounts
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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

AURORA, Ill.—In its biggest acquisition in 47 years, Alarm Detection Systems has acquired Safe Systems, a residential and commercial security business in Louisville, Colo.

The buy expands the company’s territory outside of the Midwest for the first time, adds more than 10,000 accounts to Alarm Detection’s existing 30,000 and more than $500,000 to its previous RMR of $2.3 million, Ed Bonifas, EVP of Alarm Detection Systems, told Security Systems News.

The two companies’ central stations will stay in place and work redundantly, he said. Alarm Detection will also maintain Safe System’s satellite office in Colorado Springs.

“There’s an awesome situation going on here,” Bonifas said of the company’s 65th acquisition to date.

The acquisition should increase Alarm Detection’s revenues to $46 million a year, he said.

Safe Systems will continue to operate under that branding in Colorado with its more than 80 employees remaining on staff.

“They’ve built a great brand,” Bonifas said.

The addition of staff will put Alarm Detections’ employee roll at over 300, he said.

In Colorado, employees will “come to work with the same company with the same company name, same company management,” Bonifas said. “They have a good track record for growth. We’ll keep that momentum going and bring some resources to the table to help.”

Safe Systems’ former owner, Larry Halpern, will be part of the transition.

SPP Advisors represented Safe Systems in the transaction.

“For Alarm Detection Systems to expand beyond its current geographic area, they needed to buy a company with a similar operating philosophy. In Safe Systems, ADS was the perfect complement,” said SPP managing director Mark Sandler.

“Safe Systems has low attrition, and its contracts are in as good a condition as I’ve ever seen,” Sandler told SSN. “Denver is a terrific and growing market [and only] a two-hour plane ride from Chicago.

Citizens Bank of Boston provided financing.

Alarm Detection is on the lookout for further acquisitions, Bonifas said. “We’d love to do more,” he said.

Family-owned and operated since 1968, Alarm Detection Systems says it is committed to same-day service with more than 100 trained and certified technicians.  The company installs and services fire alarms, CCTV and access control.