Moon Security moonlights with auxiliary business

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

KIRKLAND, Washington - Moon Security in late July opened a satellite office here for a growing security-related side business. Moon uses ankle bracelets to monitor people who are under house arrest to ensure they stay within permitted geographic areas. It also monitors people for alcohol usage.

"When you drink alcohol, you sweat and the bracelet detects alcohol in the sweat,' explained Mike Miller vice president of Moon Security.

Miller launched this side business a few years ago. "It used to be a small business,' he said. Today, Moon has 70 to 80 percent of the local market and it is responsible for some specific geographic territories within the state. "For us it's turned into a million and a half dollar business. It used to generate $8,000 to $12,000 a month ... with additional territories, it's quickly moved from $100,000 to $200,000 per month.'

The client who is wearing the bracelet pays the bill. Miller got into this business because government officials wanted to get out of the business. "We saved the city $250,000 to $350,000' by taking over the program, he said.

Is this an opportunity other security companies should look into? Possibly, Miller said. Most states have a similar program, but not all have public-private partnerships like this. And even if they do, territories may be protected. Miller says he works with referring agencies to ensure that they'll use his ankle bracelet equipment.

Clients pay a daily rate, which ranges from nine to 17 or 18 dollars a day. "We call it our recurring daily revenue.'