On the heels of growth, Harrington Signals offers integration solutions

Friday, April 1, 2005

MOLINE, Ill. - Recognizing that the market is moving further towards the implementation of fully integrated solutions, Harrington Signals is centering its focus more to that side of the fire product market just as it is experiencing steady growth into 2005.

The company, which was started in 1928 as a provider of a fire alarm systems known as a Coded Municipal Master Box system, offers a complete line of ISO-9001 Certified quality manufactured products, which range from simple single-zone conventional through complex addressable, combination and networked systems to pull stations and detectors and explosion-proof devices.

“We have some of the best kept secrets in the industry,” said Denise Brush, national accounts manager with the company.

In the past, the company focused on working with its 100 engineered systems distributors and OEM partners. But Brush said that focus changed over the last three years in response to the changing security market.

“We are moving towards more integrated systems and growing the company in that direction,” she said. “Since 9/11, more people are installing fully integrated systems.”

Products that have allowed Harrington to move toward the integration market include the Tracker 8000, which incorporates a communications port to integrate with building management systems. Additionally, the company produces an LED annunciator system and a fan control system that rounds out the life safety notification package and can also be fully integrated.

Brush said the company hopes to have the integrated systems become at least 30 percent of its overall business and increase at a steady pace over the next five years.

Brush said part of the way the company can stand out from other companies in this space is by focusing on the customer service aspect of providing complete solutions.

“We feel that we have the best customer service and technical service in the industry,” Brush said. “We like to keep a personalized approach to our customers.”

The company’s niche is to focus on the small- and medium-sized facilities, but having a specific niche doesn’t hold the company back from loftier goals, which is to be considered a competitor against larger organizations, such as Silent Knight and Fire Lite.

Doree Shewell, president and chief executive officer of Harrington, said the company has found that there is a specific group of customers the company is determined to reach.

“Some of the changes in the industry have left some customers behind,” Shewell said. “We are looking to gain that business from those smaller companies that are left behind.”

Shewell also said the company’s wide range of products will draw customers in and then it can further market integrated solutions.

“For us, new products get us out there in the market,” she said, “and meeting the same features that some of the larger guys have.”