Conservative approach builds RMR for Memphis provider

Frase Protection grows business with a primary focus on security
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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

MEMPHIS, Tenn.—While telecoms and cablecos are making inroads into the home security industry by leading with automated home services, a decades-old family run business, Frase Protection, is taking the opposite route.

And it’s succeeding.

Frase, in business for more than 40 years, has 4,000 accounts and $205,000 in RMR. Its goal is to increase RMR by 10 percent every year “and we are accomplishing that,” owner Jonathan Frase told Security Systems News. It is one of the largest, privately owned wireless security system providers in the Memphis area.

The company, with 16 employees, has lately been focusing on the middle-end residential market. Earlier, in the 1980s, it did a lot of work with high-end homebuilders, Frase said.

Memphis is a high crime area, and Frase is “known as a go-to company” for security first, he said.

“We are still leading our sales process with security offerings,” he said. Home automation comes after, as a part of its services.

“Vivint and some other fast-growth companies are using more aggressive sales tactics, leading with other than security,” but that’s not right for Frase, he said.

About 86 percent of Frase’s accounts are residential. The company tends to stay away from big commercial accounts because that would take time and resources away from residential installation and the company’s pride in its customer service, he said. The company also limits its accounts to those within an hour of its office.

“We’ve felt that temptation to expand, but we want to be as efficient as we can be in the service department,” he said.

The same goes for acquisitions. Frase has acquired in the past, but it’s not interested in that at the moment, he said. “We have such a good thing going. A good model. Our operation is so smooth.”

Frase’s two suppliers are DMP and 2GIG, and it partners with Alarm.com. Acquiring firms that use other suppliers could upset his company’s equilibrium, he said.

In 2004, Frase, a former commercial pilot, started working at the company his father started. Years ago Frase’s father, an electrical engineer, did a favor for a relative whose local music store was frequently broken into. His father designed a system that caught the burglar and then, through referrals and word of mouth, his security business got started.

The company recently received an Angie’s List Super Service Award, an award given to only about 5 percent of home security companies in the Greater Memphis Area, according to Angie’s List.