CMS joins Citizens Finance program

Monday, March 1, 2004

LONGWOOD, Fla. - Computerized Monitoring Services has become the second central station to join Citizens Finance Co.’s Equity Builder Program, which offers account financing for dealers at the beginning of a contract as well as ownership after a three- year period.

The program allows consumers to borrow funds to purchase security systems and monitoring directly from CFC. Dealers, who retain the consumer relationship throughout the duration of the contract, are not subject to chargebacks or recourse. Jim Miller, vice president of CFC, said the program was developed in response to dealers looking for a unique financing program.

“Its true focus is to aid dealers with long-term growth goals in creating equity in their business,” he said. “CFC takes the guesswork out of billing and collections, allowing dealers to focus on their core competencies.”

The program includes an affiliation with GE Security, which provides equipment to dealers involved in the program at a reduced rate. Product packages have been specifically designed for the project, said Tony Wilson, president of CMS.

In November 2003, Alarm Watch, a central station in Maryland, was the first to offer the Equity Builder Program. CFC’s success there propelled a need for an additional central station and the need to fine-tune the initiative.

“Through the input of many dealers, this program has recently been refined and the process simplified to match the business practices of dealers,” Miller said.

CFC’s confidence in CMS’s broad capabilities were a deciding factor in adding the central station to the partnership.

Although the program is still in the planning stages, Wilson said the feedback to date has been positive.

“It is a good program offering alarm companies a different funding source,” he said. “It allows us to bring something unique to the table.”

At press time, there was no information available on how many dealers have signed on to the program. Although Wilson was unsure of a target number of dealers he would like to see on board within the coming year, he said all parties involved want to be aggressive and grow in the market. Miller concurred.

“CFC has worked hard to form strategic alliances with GE, Alarm Watch and CMS,” Miller said. “We feel that these relationships will not only lead to our own success but will provide the best in marketing, equipment and services for our dealers.”