PERS Market

Funded dealer program launched
Wednesday, April 1, 2009

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Calif.--American Two-Way announced on Feb. 20 the launch of the first large-scale, funded medical alert dealer program through Liberty Medical Response and American Two-Way. “We are very excited to be part of what we feel will be a big opportunity for dealers,” said American Two-Way CEO Christopher Baskin.

Baskin said the program is similar to alarm dealer programs like those offered by ADT and Monitronics, and gives dealers a reliable source to sell their medical alert contracts on an ongoing basis. “We feel this type of program has been missing in the marketplace,” Baskin said. “For years, we have had requests from dealers to provide a funding source for their medical alert contracts. We now have a reputable company to refer them to.”

In the current harsh economic climate, Baskin said, many alarm dealers are entering the medical alert industry as a way to generate more RMR, and the American Two-Way/Liberty Medical Response partnership offers them a way to break in.

At the Barnes Buchanan Conference held in Palm Beach, Fla., in February, Michael Barnes  gave PERS high marks for the opportunity it presents. “There’s no question that the fundamental demographics of this country [the aging population] support [PERS],” Barnes said. “But it’s not an easy business to get into.”

Baskin said Liberty Medical Response is the perfect partner for the funded dealer program. Liberty Medical Response is a subsidiary of Medco, which has $44 billion in annual sales, and is best known for its TV ads featuring actor Wilford Brimley offering diabetes-testing equipment.

“While some companies have been hesitant to fund medical alert contracts due to the month-to-month term, we were not surprised by Liberty’s decision,” Baskin said. “With multiples for bulk purchases of medical alert contracts now being the same or higher than alarm contracts, bulk purchases have become very expensive.”

The Liberty Medical Response reseller program provides the medical alert equipment, brochures, and paperwork free to the dealer. The contracts are then purchased for $375 each.

“With the economic climate having a negative effect on the security industry, we feel very well positioned for substantial growth in the years ahead,” Baskin said. “The healthcare industry has proven to be a growth area even during significant recessions.”

Baskin said American Two-Way would soon announce other types of reseller programs with different types of benefits for their dealers. Dealers will also still be able to sign up with American Two-Way directly and keep their contracts. “We are confident these new programs and other exciting announcements from us this year will help us remain the nation’s largest wholesaler of medical alert and telehealth products and services,” Baskin said.