Monitronics, Lanvac offer dealers Canadian monitoring through strategic alliance

Thursday, June 4, 2009

DALLAS and OTTAWA—Monitronics, one of the United States’ larger monitoring companies, has entered into a strategic alliance with Canadian third-party monitoring firm Lanvac, which operates a hot redundant network of five centrals across Canada, to improve its dealer program north of the border.

According to Patrick Soo, Monitronics’ director of Canadian operations, the strategic alliance made sense for both organizations and will benefit dealers immensely. “We’ve been in Canada now for two and a half years, however we were monitoring our accounts out of the U.S. Based on dealer response, we felt there was a need to get a central station going in Canada.

“There were some perceptions issues within the dealer and subscriber communities,” Soo said. “In Canada there were a handful of central stations that we spoke to who had a national presence, didn’t compete with their dealers and also provided a very high level of response. That was our criterion moving forward, and that was what got us together with Lanvac.”

Lanvac general manager Bert O’Grady said the Monitronics strategic alliance was a perfect fit for both companies and offered a powerful synergy to the channel. “When Monitronics decided to move into Canada, they met with some significant resistance because Canadians are so protective of their identity, if you will. Dealers were very reluctant to climb on board with program that would see their accounts monitored in the United States,” O’Grady said. “There are a couple ways our companies happen to mesh. For example, our company has a written policy whereby we do not compete with our dealers in any way, shape or form, and we were intrigued that Monitronics has a similar philosophy … It just seemed to be a natural fit.”

Monitronics VP marketing & market development Mitch Clarke feels the alliance is indicative of the resilience of the industry. “We’re very excited that amidst a downturn economy, we’re still finding ways to grow," Clarke said. "We believe that innovation and the way you do business offer a growth strategy—this is the right growth strategy for us.”

Monitronics was founded in 1994 and provides monitored security system services to more than 700,000 residential customers and commercial clients through its network dealers. Lanvac has been in operation for Canadian dealers for 25 years and has stations in Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver.

Soo said that Monitronics expects to be monitoring its Canadian dealers’ accounts through the Lanvac central station network by July.