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Security Networks ups credit facility by $100 million

Super-regional looking at 38 percent CAGR, again
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05/02/2012

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.—Security Networks, a super-regional based here, announced April 30 that it has extended its credit facility by $100 million, bringing the total to $250 million.

Guard/security installation company acquires guard-tracking technology

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Yesterday Universal Protection, a $500 million guard company that also does security installation, acquired Heritage Security Services of San Diego. It also acquired a guard-tracking technology its CEO says is "game changing."

The deal brings 1,200 guards, but more interesting, it also brings with it a “proprietary and patented guard-tracking technology.” This is what really drew Universal into the deal, Steve Jones, co-CEO and COO of Universal Services of America, the parent company of Universal Protection, told me today.

He said that Heritage spent $6 million over the past five years developing this technology. Jones said Universal plans to introduce this technology in all of its locations

“Basically each officer carries a device and we can … put a geofence around the account. So we can tell where the guards are. [We know] if they go outside the fence, if they’re not doing what they’re supposed to be doing, if they haven’t completed a task they’re supposed to do,” Jones explained. “We can take a customer account and show the customer point-by-point, minute-by-minute, where an officer was,” he said.

“And we get an alert if the officer fails to do something.”
 Jones said Universal will use the technology across its footprint “as a differentiator” initially, but there has been discussion of possibly “licensing it to guard companies who are in markets we are not in.”

The acquisition of Heritage makes Universal the dominant player in San Diego, LA and Orange County, he said. “From a Southern California standpoint, Universal has a commanding marketshare.”

In March, I wrote a story about Universal Protection in which Jones told me that Universal wants to have security installation capabilities (which are currently concentrated in California and the Carolinas) in every market where it has guards.

The company acquired SFI, and integration business last fall.   Jones said the company plans to complete another acquisition, which may include a security integration component, by the end of the summer.

“Stay tuned,” he said.

New partnership links alarm industry, police, insurers

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

What may have seemed like a pipe dream to many a few years ago—getting the alarm industry, the law enforcement community and the insurance industry on the same page—is now reality with the Partnership for Priority Video Alarm Response.

The new public/private partnership brings together all of the stakeholders in property crime to reduce losses and increase arrests through the use of video intrusion alarms. Among the participants are the National Sheriffs Association and the National Insurance Crime Bureau, with Don Young of Protection 1 and Steve Walker of Stanley Convergent Security Solutions representing the alarm industry on the PPVAR board.

"We are beginning to have credible data with encouraging results of arrest rates hundreds of times what is found with traditional alarms," said Keith Jentoft, coordinator for the partnership and president of RSI Video Technologies. "We have been working with many alarm companies, law enforcement and PSAPs, as well as insurers who ultimately pay the bill for property crime. This partnership will help gather real-world examples of what is working best for all the stakeholders."

Jentoft said large third-party monitoring companies have also gotten on board, including CMS, UCC and Rapid Response. On the law enforcement side, the Los Angeles Sheriffs Department—the second-largest police organization in the country—has joined and has designated a representative.

"If you ask people, nobody has ever heard of an organization that has brought together all of the stakeholders, so we're pretty excited about it," Jentoft said.

I'll have more soon on the partnership in the online and print editions of SSN.

Fatal fire shows need for sprinklers in new homes

NFPA challenges claim by building industry that smoke alarms are enough
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05/02/2012

AUBURN, N.Y.—A fatal fire in a new home here tragically underscores the falsity of a claim by home fire sprinkler opponents that the devices are not needed in new construction, according to Maria Figueroa, regional director of the NFPA’s Fire Prevention Field Office.

Georgia integrator helps IP and cellular fire alarm communicator get OK for government building use

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05/02/2012

SUWANEE, Ga.—Brian Sheely, president of Innovative Life Safety Solutions, a Georgia-based integrator, was instrumental in getting Honeywell’s IP and cellular fire alarm communicator evaluated and found compliant with Government Services Administration security policies.

New combined fire/CO detector is ‘what the industry needs’

A N.Y. fire company predicts the cost-effective solution will appeal to building owners in light of new CO laws
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05/02/2012

SYRACUSE, N.Y.— A new combined fire/carbon monoxide detector recently introduced by Gamewell-FCI has already netted Syracuse Time & Alarm several jobs because the product saves money and has high functionality, according to Mark Simpson, sales manager of the systems integrator, which is based here and whose business is about 60 percent fire.

Hile named CEO of IFSS

Hile aims to quadruple independent integration firm, expand managed services, PSIM capabilities.
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05/02/2012

FORT MYERS, Fla.— Robert Hile, an industry veteran who most recently led the security division of Siemens Building Technology group, has been named CEO of Integrated Fire and Security Solutions, an independent integrator based here.

Court decision favors ADT—and other alarm companies

Industry attorney: It's 'a good decision for the alarm industry’
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05/02/2012

PASADENA, Calif.—ADT came out a winner in a recent court decision here, and the finding also is good news for others in the alarm industry, according to industry attorney Ken Kirschenbaum.

Fire alarm dealer left a great installation legacy

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

We all like to think that by the time we exit this world, we’ll have accomplished something great that we’ll be remembered by. But let’s face it, most of us are not going to make it into a Who’s Who or rate a Wikipedia page for what we’ve done in life. That’s why I found this tribute to fire dealer Larry Esch, who died last summer, so touching. It’s a good reminder of what really counts in life: getting the little things right—in this case, fire panel by fire panel.

Carter Rierson, president of Best Defense Security & Fire Protection of Waunakee, Wis., wrote the tribute and sent it to Security Systems News. He writes beautifully of a person who set a standard for quality when it came to life safety. Here’s what Carter had to say:
 

I am writing this letter to recognize an industry professional who went above and beyond to make our industry better. Larry Esch was the owner of World Security of Harvard, Ill., an NFPA 72 Code Committee member, and an industry veteran for nearly 40 years. Larry passed away last summer.

I met Larry through our fire alarm manufacturer’s dealer conventions where he instructed other dealers on the importance of setting a quality standard in their alarm installations.

In these sessions, Larry showed photos of poor, improper, and non-compliant installation examples, citing the codes and illustrating why the examples did not comply with the codes. He then continued on to show examples of very clean, professional code-compliant systems installed by his company. He noted the difference and educated the class on how his company had completed these installations.

Larry emphasized that he was not telling anybody in the class “how” to install an alarm, simply that it was important that EVERY fire alarm installing company set a standard on how they want their systems installed. He stressed that without setting a standard and ensuring the technicians installing the system follow that standard, quality cannot be guaranteed.

Shortly after his passing I received a call to service a fire alarm installed by Larry’s company.  I am a NICET level IV alarm professional with 21 years experience servicing thousands of fire panels, installed by multiple different companies, and this alarm was the cleanest, most organized, easiest to service installation I had EVER seen!

Words simply cannot describe how neatly every wire was terminated and labeled.  The installation was EXACTLY as he had shown in his training class. Although it was the very first time I had stepped foot on the job, his installation was so clean and easy to follow that I was easily able to service the system. I took photos of the panels and use them to illustrate proper panel wiring when training my technicians.  We use this as OUR quality standard!

Not only did Larry always make himself available to other alarm dealers with questions, he made the effort to make us all better at what we do. He always stressed, “Set a standard,” and lived by that standard himself.

Larry taught an important lesson and set a standard we can all learn from.  Our industry needs more Larrys!  He made a difference.

 

ADT adds another to management lineup

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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

More post-split news from ADT: It recently made another management lineup announcement about a new chief marketing officer, Tony Wells. Wells doesn't have a security background—his previous experience has been at companies as diverse as 24 Hour Fitness and Nissan—but is skilled at marketing and communications, according to a news release. This latest ADT announcement follows on the heels of management changes it announced just three weeks ago.

Here’s more from the April 27 announcement, as reported by PRNewswire:

SCHAFFHAUSEN, Switzerland—Tyco International Ltd. today announced that Tony Wells will assume the role of chief marketing and customer officer of The ADT Corporation, to be created upon separation from Tyco later this year.

"Tony's hiring is another example of our commitment to bringing top-tier talent to our management team as ADT prepares to become an independent public company," said Naren Gursahaney, current president of Tyco's ADT North American residential and small business security segment and future chief executive officer of The ADT Corporation.  "Tony brings best-in-class marketing and digital expertise, strong customer engagement insight and a deep understanding of ADT's subscription-based business model. I am confident he will play an integral role in further enhancing our brand and driving our strategies for growth."

Mr. Wells, 47, joins ADT from 24 Hour Fitness, where he served as executive vice president and chief marketing officer since 2007. At 24 Hour Fitness, he was responsible for marketing communications, public relations, oversight of 24hourfitness.com, member services and retail products/services.  Previously, Mr. Wells served as vice president, client services for VISA USA, Inc., where he was directly responsible for global relationship management for HSBC and USAA Banks.  Wells joined VISA USA as vice president, partnership marketing, where he oversaw daily operations and management of Visa's sponsorship, event and alliance efforts. Mr. Wells also held a variety of marketing positions at other major brands, including General Motors R*Works, Mills Corporation, and Nissan North America, Inc.  A former Marine infantry officer, Mr. Wells received a B.S. degree from the United States Naval Academy and a management certificate from Johns Hopkins University.

Don Boerema, who had been serving as ADT's chief marketing officer, has assumed the new role of chief corporate development officer. In this role, Mr. Boerema will be responsible for corporate strategy, market development, business development, mergers and acquisitions and new business units.

Upon separation from Tyco International Ltd., The ADT Corporation will be a leading provider of electronic security, interactive automation and related monitoring services for residences and small businesses in North America. … Headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, ADT employs 16,000 people at nearly 200 locations.

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