With ECS acquisition, Norment adds fire systems

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

MONTGOMERY, Ala.—Norment Security Group, a contractor specializing in the corrections vertical, acquired Engineered Control Systems, a Spokane-based fire installation company.

Bringing on ECS allows Norment to enhance its product offerings to include fire alarm systems, according to Jim Mann, a Norment vice president.

The acquisition is expected to create new opportunities for Norment, especially through the retrofitting and upgrading of old detention facilities, which typically have outdated fire alarm equipment.

“A large portion of our business is related to the service and modernization (of such facilities),” Mann said.

Greg Ergenbright, president and CEO of Norment, said, “We are very excited about this transaction, which creates the clear market leader in correctional security electronics.”

He noted that the correctional industry is a significant component of federal, state, and county government spending.

“We anticipate that there will be a demand for new correctional facilities and aging facilities will require renovations and updates to remain operational and safe,” Ergenbright said. “The addition of ECS electronics capabilities with our construction operations better positions Norment to be the first choice for government agencies and others who are looking to expand their facilities and to start new projects.”

Mann said Norment, which was founded in 1952, does some work in the commercial and industrial sector, but said the company’s main focus is corrections.

He said that while Norment is based in Alabama, it has an office in Tracy, Calif., and that office is expected to work closely with ECS in Spokane. “ECS will be adding to the mix on the West Coast,” Mann said.

He said the acquisition also is expected to boost Norment’s RMR. Norment already has a significant number of service contracts on its hardware side, maintaining and upgrading correctional facility equipment such as locks, he said. Maintaining and servicing fire alarms will add to the service contracts Norment has on the electronics side, Mann said.

The Sept. 30 acquisition announcement was made by Los Angeles private equity firm The Gores Group, owner of Norment. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Tim Meyer, managing director of The Gores Group, said, “The combination of Norment and ECS will create a more strategic and compelling correctional security competitor.”