SBD expands into Tenn.

Integration firm looking to continue rapid growth
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Thursday, September 9, 2010

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.—Security By Design, a systems integrator based in Detroit, opened a new office here earlier this year, and gained full license compliance as of Aug. 1. The office will be headed up by Pat Markham, SBD’s new VP of operations, who comes to the company from Safir Rosetti.

“It’s a big marketplace for us down there,” said Jason Buckman, CEO and owner of SBD. Another big reason for establishing this office and one in Denver (run by Greg Skarvelis, VP of IT integration who previously worked with Honeywell and AgentVI), is to support customers with regional or national footprints.

“These larger companies,” said Buckman, “they do nothing but complain about the big boys. They want the type of service we can give them.” But, he said, “they also keep reverting to the idea that [the national integrators] are big and have a big reach. We keep trying to tell them that they don’t have more reach than we have. The guys at the big firms might all wear the same shirt, but every office has their own P&L. That’s no different than me calling a subcontractor to do some work for me around the country.”

While SBD hasn’t joined SNA, PSA, NSI or any of the other formal integrator groups, Buckman said he has a group of colleagues he can trust to do good work around the country.

Regardless of his methods, something’s working. Security By Design made the Inc. 500 list of fastest-growing small companies for 2010 , leading all security installers by growing 956 percent over the past three years to $6.7 million in 2009 sales.

Much of that growth was generated by capitalizing on expanding and renovating casinos in the Detroit area. Can SBD keep that up? Obviously, growth that fast is hard to sustain, but “we’re searching for more of those big customers,” Buckman said.