UCC doubles account base with innovation

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

SAN ANTONIO--Though a July report from UK-based research firm IMS Research predicted the wholesale monitoring market will grow by less than one percent by 2012, United Central Control’s senior vice president Mark Matlock said he couldn’t disagree more. “We’ve gone from 85,000 accounts in January of 2006 to 165,000, so we’ve nearly doubled in size. It’s hard to look at those numbers and say the wholesale market is stagnant and that there’s not a lot of opportunity out there,” he said.

Matlock said that UCC has been making concerted efforts to expand its offerings including access control and hosted video services, and has found success. “We’ve got to open minds to new monitoring opportunities … we’ve got more bandwidth than ever, we have to be on the forefront seeking out monitoring that’s available to us through IP,” he said.

Equally important, Matlock also stressed the need for ongoing dealer training and education.

“Dealers are in the mindset that they want to do what they always do and what they feel comfortable with. We have to change their mindset … and educate our dealer base so they seek out new types of customers,” he said.

The report’s author, Niall Jenkins, told Security Systems News in the August article “Wholesale Market Stagnant?” that one of the reasons for the wholesale market’s slow growth is the consolidation and reduction of independent dealers. However, “even if the supposition is correct that the alarm dealer base isn’t growing,” said Matlock, “we have to create customers by offering technology that we’ve never offered before.”

Matlock disputed the notion, too, that wholesale monitoring companies have to rely on acquisitions for growth. “Acquisitions are not part of our strategy, we haven’t grown through acquisitions, but instead mainly by providing great service and word-of-mouth,” he said. “If you focus on the customer and doing things right, everything will take care of itself.”