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SW24’s ‘game-changer’: No long-term monitoring contracts

Company will handle residential intrusion with monthly agreements
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09/12/2012

NEW YORK—SecureWatch 24 is entering the residential intrusion market with what it calls a “blast from the past” for the security industry: no long-term monitoring contracts, with customers owning their equipment and paying up front to cover installation costs.

Virginia security provider having ‘best year ever’

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

When I wrote about Richmond Alarm last summer, it was having a good year. The Richmond, Va.-based, family-owned, full-service security company had grown its footprint into Eastern Virginia with a new acquisition, making that company the largest locally-owned security provider in the state.

But 2012 is turning out to be an even better year for Richmond Alarm. Not only did the company celebrate its 65th anniversary this year, but it also won Chesterfield County’s business of the year award this summer.

Also, according to the story this week in the Richmond Times-Dispatch newspaper, revenues are climbing since they flattened out during the recession. “The calendar year 2012 will be the best year ever,” company president Wayne Boggs is quoted as saying.

Richmond Alarm, a Honeywell First Alert dealer, was awarded the 2012 First Choice Business of the Year Award in July, according to its website. It says the award “recognizes companies that consistently contribute to Chesterfield County through community service, innovative products and services, job creation, tax revenue and ethical business standards.”

Tweet smart: Cashing in on social media

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

You don’t have to look very hard to find an alarm company that isn’t keeping pace with technology. It can be difficult to stay on top of the latest and greatest, and some people are reluctant—or even defiant—when it comes to saying goodbye to the tried and true in favor of the Next Big Thing.

That attitude often spills over to the world of social media. Facebook? Twitter? “Friends” and Tweets fly just fine for the junior set, but we’re adults here. Besides, who has that kind of time to throw around?

Maybe your competition.

Social media is rapidly becoming a must-have business tool, and companies that aren’t wielding it effectively risk selling themselves short in an increasingly aggressive marketplace. Exposure and name recognition can translate into accounts no matter where you’re based or how big you are.

That fact hasn’t been lost on the Central Station Alarm Association, which will host a webinar Nov. 7 on social media strategies and how they can affect your business. Teresa Brewer of System Sensor and Michael Kremer of Intertek/ETL will discuss how to use social media to acquire customers or get referrals, boost attendance at company-sponsored events, and increase inquiries via your website or over the phone.

For those who have a success story to pass along, email Brewer at Teresa.brewer@systemsensor.com or Kremer at Michael.kremer@intertek.com. Registration information for the webinar will be available soon on the CSAA’s website.

Welcome aboard: In other CSAA news, the group’s international board of directors has approved Jay Hauhn as first vice president of the Executive Committee and Peter Lowitt as secretary. Hauhn is CTO of Tyco Integrated Security; Lowitt is president of Hicksville, N.Y.-based Lowitt Alarms & Security.

“The CSAA Nominating Committee did an exceptional job in vetting these outstanding candidates, and the unanimous vote of the board of directors reflects the complete confidence of the board in both of these exceptional gentlemen,” CSAA Executive Vice President Steve Doyle said in a prepared statement.

Vivint blows (hurricane) competition away, website says

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Monday, September 10, 2012

We’re now in hurricane season, which began in the Atlantic Ocean in June and won’t end until the last day of November. And, according to a website that does annual reviews of home security companies, the company that stands out during such bad weather is Vivint.

6Webs.com selected Utah-based home automation/home security company as the “Best Home Security Company during Hurricane Season,” according to a news release from that website, http://www.6webs.com.

The company says it does independent reviews of home security systems and “conducts an annual review of the leading home security providers and ranks them based on several categories that are important to consumers.”

In awarding the recognition to Vivint – which is reportedly considering a sale – 6Webs.com cites the features the company offers including its Go! Control panel weather alerts, with inclement weather notifications via an iPhone, iPad or Android device; the back-up batteries it provides for all the home security systems it installs, which help ensure protection if the power goes out; its 24-hour customer service; and the fact that it provides cellular monitoring.

“In the case of a natural disaster not only could power be lost, but phone line service could be interrupted for a long period of time leaving your home less secure. This is also the case with Internet-based systems when power is lost, the connection to the monitoring center will be lost as well. Vivint’s cellular security system is the most reliable way to ensure the connections with the monitoring center is not interrupted,” the news release said.

‘Make sure mobile is part of the solution you offer’

Industry experts say mobile apps must be part of a successful security business today
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09/07/2012

A smart revolution quietly occurred this year—one that’s dramatically changing the security industry.

As of February, a Nielsen report showed, about half of all Americans with mobile phones—49.7 percent—now own smartphones. And the number of smartphone owners is rapidly growing.

Vivint exploring sale

CEO said $2 billion offer from Blackstone previously turned down
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09/06/2012

PROVO, Utah—Vivint is considering a sale with final bids due later this month, according to a Reuters report. The report said the home automation/home security company could be valued at as much as $2 billion, and that among three private equity groups looking at the company is GTCR—owner of Protection 1, one of the nation’s largest security companies.

Securadyne acquires platform for growth in Northeast

Boethel: Surveillance Specialties brings fire installation, other technical, vertical market expertise
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09/05/2012

DALLAS—Securadyne Systems, a new systems integration company launched in February by industry veterans Ken Francis and Carey Boethel, now has a platform for growth in the Northeast with the acquisition of Surveillance Specialties (SURV).

UPS acquires A&R

Acquisition makes UPS fifth-largest security company in nation
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09/05/2012

SANTA ANA, Calif.—Guard and security installation company Universal Protection Service announced this week it has acquired A&R Security Services Inc., one of the largest privately owned and operated guard providers in the Midwest.

MOBOTIX targets resi with new camera technology

Company says its new 180-degree door station product is ideal for high-end homes and apartment complexes
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09/05/2012

NEW YORK—MOBOTIX is using its new hemispheric camera technology to launch into the home automation space.

Vivint sued over alleged ‘robocalls’

Lawsuit contends prerecorded calls were to individuals’ cellphones without permission
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09/05/2012

CHICAGO—A new class-action lawsuit accuses Vivint of sending automated calls to cellphones without the owners’ permission, violating their privacy and federal law.

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