Home Director adds integrators to Sears Connected Home program

Friday, October 1, 2004

LIVERMORE, Calif. - Home Director, a home networking system manufacturer and supplier, has added two integrators to the Sears Connected Home program, bringing the current number to 13.

But the company has plans to add to that number since the program - a home integration partnership rolled out in late 2003 between the two companies in which Home Director provides the infrastructure - has shown increased interest.

“We are going to add a lot more integrators,” said Barbara Carney, Home Director’s vice president of Sears Connected Home.

And it looks like the pool to choose from is populated. Carney said there have been more than 1,000 applicants to the program since its inception.

“When you hang the Sears name out there, everyone and their brother wants to be a part if it,” Carney said.

Home Director is a provider of home networking solutions - either through partnerships with other companies or through its installation division, Digital Interiors.

The two companies that joined the program are AllTech Specialists of Tampa, Fla., and Jupiter, Fla.-based Atlantic Smart Technologies. Victor Adams, the owner of AllTech, said being part of the program has greatly impacted business.

“It created immediate recognition when we work with builders,” Adams said. “The Sears name opened up doors for us.”

Adams pointed to the company’s increase in pre-wired installations, which moved from 300 before the company joined the program to installing more than 3,000 in the past 14 months.

But structured wiring in the new construction segment of the residential market is not the only place integrators have seen business improve.

“Cross sales have worked tremendously,” he said. “We have gotten leads on other jobs, such as security through the program.”

Although Home Director does not have a set number of companies it would like to add to the program, they are focused on a particular kind of representative - full-service integrators in high-growth housing markets.

“There are a number of markets we are looking at throughout the country,” Carney said, adding that those markets are located throughout the country. “If we find an integrator in a market that we have needs, we will consider them.”

Adams said the program’s detailed application process, which includes interviews, a financial approval and a due diligence process, took approximately six weeks.

“Sears is very careful on who they hang their brand on,” Carney said.