NMC records stellar first year

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Saturday, February 1, 2003

ALISO VIEJO, Calif. - A contract central station that started from scratch a year ago has already signed on more than 40,000 accounts, a growth pattern that company officials project will continue over the next few years.

For the past year, National Monitoring Center, a company led by former National Alarm Computer Center executives, has only been targeting independent alarm dealers on the West Coast, primarily through word of mouth and advertisements in the Mirror, the monthly publication of the California Alarm Association. Now, NMC officials said the company is ready to take on a national marketing campaign intended to create another spurt of growth that will result in a dealer base throughout the country.

“If you take a look at the retail/wholesale market today, you have to run smarter and harder than ever before,” said Michael Schubert, president of NMC. “Our philosophy and the direction we are taking is using new technology to be more efficient.”

Although NMC’s goal for its first year was around 50,000 accounts, wooing the company’s 65 dealers to come on board was no easy feat in the competitive landscape of the contract monitoring sector. Nearly a dozen new central stations have opened their doors or expanded services into that sector over the past 18 months. (See related story )
The 10,000 square foot central station facility, the former home of a high tech company that specialized in streaming video, is where NMC management lays credit to much of the company’s success. The building is wired with a high-speed Internet connection and is hooked up to an uninterruptible power grid.

“In the months before we went live, we knew this was our chance to start from scratch,” said Woodie Andrawos, executive vice president and part owner of NMC. “We looked for where the holes were in what alarm companies were looking for...and we did that when we looked for vendors, telephony software and our monitoring applications.”

Craig Curran, president of Smart Systems Technologies in Laguna Hills, Calif., signed on with NMC late last year to monitoring about 700 of his residential accounts.

“It’s mostly the technology, the customer service and their ability to follow through quickly,” Curran said.

Larry Walker, owner of The Alarm Company in Los Gatos, Calif., said he followed NMC’s management from NACC, where Walker also sat on the dealer advisory board.

“The way they run their operation and what they know about central stations is pretty amazing,” Walker said. “I can call with a problem and get to the bottom of it with one phone call.”

Services such as a false alarm counter within the Monitoring Automation Systems’ automation platform as well as the addition of video monitoring, in the first quarter of this year, are part NMC’s technological offering.