Tri-Ed makes connectivity play

Company opens five branches that are also data solution centers
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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

WOODBURY, N.Y.—Tri-Ed Distribution’s latest expansion, which includes five new branch locations, will focus on connectivity products as well as security products, Pat Comunale, Tri-Ed Distribution CEO, told Security Systems News.

In addition to being branch locations, the five offices will also serve as Tri-Ed Data Solution Centers.

The branch offices—one in Little Rock, Ark., and four in Colorado—were formerly branch offices of comCables, a Denver-based manufacturer and distributor of structured cabling solutions, such as Cat5E, Cat6 and fiber solutions. Tri-Ed acquired the company in September, but did not announce the deal until this month.

Since September, Tri-Ed has been working to separate the distribution and manufacturing divisions of comCables. Greg Greenwood, former owner and current president of comCables, will continue to run the manufacturing business as a separate entity.

This deal is designed to bring Tri-Ed new locations, new contractors to sell to and additional connectivity products to sell to existing customers.

"[Previously] most of the business at those locations was with data and connectivity contractors, [those who] pull Cat5 and do network installation. The locations did not focus on security," Comunale explained. The acquisition is "an opportunity for us to ... cross-sell the security product to [those contactors]."

When Tri-Ed merged with Northern Video in March 2010, "we started to sell to large integrators and those in the electrical contractor space ... that did not necessarily buy from the security channel," he said.

Connectivity products are important to accommodate those contractors and others as physical security becomes more IT-focused.  "We recognized we need to move in that direction," Comunale said.

Tri-Ed is "cross-training specialists on both the connectivity and on the security side," he said.

The new Colorado branches are located in Denver, Centennial, Grand Junction and Colorado Springs.