Securing homes on Colorado’s Front Range

New acquisition by Safe Systems is first step in new growth strategy
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Thursday, May 19, 2011

LOUISVILLE, Colo.—Safe Systems, a Honeywell First Alert dealer based here, recently acquired D-Tech Alarm Specialist in Pueblo, Colo. The acquisition expands Safe Systems’ growing security business in southern Colorado, and is the first step in the company’s new strategy, according to company executives.

“This is our first one and we are looking for and talking to other companies actively,” Larry Halpern, president of Safe Systems, told Security Systems News.

Sales manager Tim Watson added: “We’re looking for strong Colorado companies to help take us to that next level.”

The May 7 announcement of the acquisition of D-Tech is the latest development for the company that Halpern started 29 years ago when he was a University of Colorado student studying business information systems.

“It’s quite an entrepreneurial story,” Watson said. Halpern started the business in 1982 “with a shoestring,” Watson said, but today Safe Systems bills itself as Colorado’s largest independently owned, full-service, UL-listed monitored security company. Watson said the company generates about $320,000 in RMR and gross revenues exceed $6 million.

That growth has been organic, but now the company has initiated a multi-year acquisition plan with the addition of D-Tech, Watson and Halpern said.

Safe Systems has 10,000 customers and the addition of D-Tech, a family-owned Pueblo institution for more 20 years whose owners are retiring, now adds 400 more, according to Halpern and Watson. D-Tech will operate as Safe Systems.

Safe Systems designs, installs and monitors commercial and residential security systems exclusively for Colorado's Front Range, the state’s most populous region centered around the Boulder-Denver region.

Acquiring D-Tech allows “more market share” south of that area, Halpern said. The company plans to open up a new office in Pueblo, he said.

D-Tech’s former customers will receive new technology that Denver-Bolder metro customers get, such as Honeywell’s Total Connect video and alarm services, Watson said. Also, Halpern said, “we’re going to be rolling out our radio network there,” which allows monitoring of fire alarms without phone lines.

Halpern described himself as “a techno geek” whose company is “on the leading edge of technology” and typically the first to introduce new services to the state. For example, Halpern was a pioneer in starting a radio network in the 1980s, and it’s now the largest in Colorado, according to Watson.

“We’re bringing all these new technologies that make the customers’ lives easier, reduce their expenses and give them better security … that we’ve been offering it the Front Range, and we’re now offering them in southern Colorado,” Halpern said.