UCC acquired by COPS’ owner Lydia Security Monitoring

UCC will continue to operate separately, under its current brand
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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

WILLIAMSTOWN, N.J.—Lydia Security Monitoring, the parent company of COPS Monitoring, both based here, announced today it has acquired wholesale central station United Central Control.

“COPS and UCC are CSAA member companies, and both are well-run and respected monitoring companies. Lydia’s acquisition of UCC adds an impressive business to their existing third party monitoring portfolio,” CSAA executive director Jay Hauhn told Security Systems News.

In a prepared statement, Jim McMullen, COPS’ president and COO said that Lydia’s previous acquisitions were rebranded as COPS and moved onto COPS Monitoring proprietary platform.

In this case, Lydia plans to operate UCC as a separate company, under its current name and branding. “One of the reasons that the owners agreed to sell to Lydia is because Lydia agreed to leave UCC as a standalone entity … with the same team in the same facility,” Mark Matlock, SVP for UCC, told SSN.

Matlock said that UCC wasn't looking for buyers, Lydia approached the company with the proposition and “They made a very compelling case,” according to Matlock.

“UCC is a stable and growing company with a reputation for offering quality services, which is why Lydia plans to continue providing unique benefits to the UCC dealer base under its own brand,” McMullen said in the statement. Lydia will also continue to operate UCC’s Stages automation platform at its UL-listed, CSAA Five Diamond facility in San Antonio. 

The additional resources brought in by the deal will help UCC incorporate new technologies and “take training to a higher level,” Matlock said. He declined to specify which technologies the company is considering. The funding will also assist UCC in securing a secondary, redundant facility, Matlock said. 

"Even though COPS and UCC will operate as separate brands, on separate monitoring platforms, with a different dealer base, neither companies will operate in a vacuum.  Both COPS and UCC have a long history of providing quality monitoring and dealer services, and I think it's fair to assume that both companies could benefit from best practices," David Smith, COPS' director of marketing and communications, told SSN in an email interview.

The companies each have dealer practices that the other could benefit from, according to Matlock. “If there’s something that is benefiting COPS dealers that we can bring to UCC, Lydia Security Monitoring is 100 percent committed to bringing those things into the fold at UCC.”

The deal, finalized Jan. 19, brings the total number of monitored accounts under Lydia to almost 2 million and the number of dealers to 4,200.

COPS operates six facilities in the United States and monitors 1.7 million accounts. It has monitoring centers in New Jersey, Florida, Arizona, Tennessee, Texas and Maryland. UCC services 750 dealers and 230,000 accounts.

The atmosphere has been very positive for UCC following the deal, according to Matlock. “We have nothing but high hopes for the future, and we’re looking to grow this thing at a level that … would have been more challenging for us, pre-acquisition,” he said.

Lydia used a portion of a recent $75 million credit facility led by Citizens Bank to finance this acquisition.