Brink's dealer makes it big in Big Apple environs

Saturday, October 1, 2005

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y.--Tom Fowler, who began his career in security as a kid in the Bronx helping out a locksmith, is currently the owner of one of the fastest-growing Brink's dealerships in the New York metropolitan area.
Next month, he'll begin tearing down walls to expand his office here. He's also actively looking to hire new employees.
Fowler opened 24-7 Security, a Brink's authorized dealership in May 2004 as a three-employee, $200,000 per-year business. He now has 19 employees, does more than $1 million per-year in business, and he opened up a satellite office in Brooklyn.
"In general, Brink's Home Security installations by our dealers are doing well this year. 24-7 Security has been increasing its sales the past six months at a rate above other dealers," said Dave Simon, spokesman for Brink's.
Fowler credits Brink's sales and installation training program and his own no-nonsense approach to sales for his success. The reason for most false alarms is poor installation, so thorough training of installers is important to him. He also notes that Brink's does background checks on all of its employees.
Fowler candidly assessed a number of security products during a telephone interview, and says he's equally candid with customers.
He eschews high-pressure sales, the "pitchbook and Colgate smile," and said he only sells customers what they need, even if they can afford more.
"You just have to be blunt," he said.
This includes letting customers know there will be a charge every month.
"I hope an alarm system will be the biggest waste of money," Fowler said. "If my customers hate me every month when they write a check, I'm happy, because that means nothing bad has happened (to necessitate using the alarm), he said.
"We're pleased to see our dealers doing well," said Simon.
"We believe our training raises the quality of installations, but more importantly, customer retention," Simon said.
Sixty percent of 24-7 Security's business is residential and 40 percent is commercial.