Mace buys surveillance manufacturer Micro-Tech

Friday, November 1, 2002

MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. - Mace Security International, known for its pepper spray product that carries the Mace name, recently acquired the assets of Micro-Tech Manufacturing.

It marks the first purchase of a camera manufacturer for Mace Security and its entrance into the electronic security market. The company will become part of Mace Security Products Division. Along with making a consumer and law enforcement line of pepper spray products, Mace produces child safety devices, such as outlet plugs, and runs a car wash chain.

"We liked this security camera business very much because we felt we could bring it in and roll it under the Mace umbrella," said Eduardo Nieves, director of investor relations for Mace Security, based here. "This is the first acquisition of which we think may be one of a few more over the years in the security product sector."

Mace Security bought the small, three-man operation for $505,000. In 2001, Hallandale, Fla.-based Micro-Tech generated revenue of approximately $774,000 and EBITDA of approximately $200,000.

Mace's Chief Executive Officer and Chairman Louis Paolino, Jr. plans to expand the Micro-Tech line, adding infrared and weatherproof cameras, DVRs and web-streaming products.

"The combination of the Mace and Micro-Tech product lines, coupled with the 27 years of combined security industry experience, enables us to successfully utilize synergistic opportunities to enhance distribution channels and increase sales and profitability," said Paolino.

Shortly after announcing the acquisition of Micro-Tech, Mace announced its first camera addition, a black and white quad surveillance system. Paolino said the introduction of the system is the company's "first step in our roll-out of many new, sophisticated security products."

Expanding companies is what Paolino is known for, said Nieves. Since coming on board at Mace in the late 1990s, Paolino has built Mace into a corporation with sales that near $60 million.

"Prior to taking over, the Mace company was losing money," said Nieves. "We've been profitable ever since."

Initially, Nieves expects Micro-Tech will record at least $1 million in business in its first year under Mace Security, but anticipates that to grow as new products are brought to market. That will be the responsibility of Micro-Tech's former owner, Moshe Luski, who is in charge of enhancing the company's product line and distribution channel.

In preparation for expanding Micro-Tech, Mace planned to buy a larger property in Hollywood, Fla., in September. The new location would include a showroom for products, warehouse and office space.