GE’s new program has added benefits for dealers, builders

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Wednesday, December 1, 2004

ARDEN HILLS, Minn. - Being a GE Security dealer has its benefits and now the company has just added one more.

To address the growing builders market, GE has unveiled its builder program - a turnkey marketing program that provides installers with necessary tools to market and sell structured wiring and security solutions to homebuilders.

The program is being unleashed as the builder market continues to be a boon for security dealers. Richard Genece, director of residential vertical marketing for GE Security, said the new home construction side of the market has been somewhat overlooked in the past.

“We recognize that builders are a key channel but really had not done a lot to market to them in the past,” he said.

By participating in the program, dealers receive point of sale materials to distribute to builders, who use them as a tool to increase technology add-on sales in new homes.

According to Steve Craig, marketing communications director at GE Infrastructure, Security, 22 percent of a builder’s revenue is derived from add-on purchases in new residences, which leads to additional installation avenues for dealers.

“We’ve assembled a program that says to dealers, if you want to sell to builders, this can augment what you can do’,” Genece said.

While the program is designed to install more structured wiring and security systems in homes, it also enables builders to tap into the security services offered by GE for their own use. For example, through a partnership with Alarm.com, the program offers job site security monitoring.

An Alarm.com system can also be installed in a model home to track a visitor’s traffic patterns.

From the installer end, the program opens up additional avenues of opportunities.

“Security dealers and integrators are constantly struggling with how to expand their business,” Genece said. “Many of them may have not looked at the builder market yet.”

And it is a growing opportunity that installers can not overlook.

“With new home construction booming across the United States, more and more residential dealers, because of the competitive pressures of their business, can’t afford to ignore this market.”

But GE officials have not only seen interest from dealers - homebuilders have been asking for this type of program.

“The builders want it,” Craig said. “We’ve had many phone calls from builders saying that this is what they have been looking for.”

One thing that Craig and Genece find valuable is the fact that structured wiring solutions have become a vital part of today’s new home construction.

Genece said having a new home without structured wiring could be detrimental to a home’s future sale.

“After seven years, even if it’s an expensive house, you try to sell it and you lose,” Genece said.