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Report: Sprinklered buildings save water, yet pay more for its usage

New NFPA study urges rethinking of fees for properties with fire sprinklers
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04/18/2012

QUINCY, Mass.—A new report shows that less water is needed to fight fires in sprinklered properties than in unsprinklered ones, yet it’s typically only sprinklered buildings that are charged for the water usage.

Will the Real Cloud Security Please Stand Up?

Steve Van Till, president and CEO of Brivo Systems, talks about what a cloud solution is – and isn't
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04/18/2012

Steve Van Till, president and CEO of Brivo Systems, a provider of software-as-a-service applications for security management, says it's clear that many people still don’t understand the difference between real cloud solutions and products that merely connect to the Internet. It’s equally clear that many vendors are not helping matters, and are in fact actively confusing the market, he says.

Safeguard makes acquisition

Super-regional completes tuck-in in Santa Fe
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04/18/2012

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.—Super-regional Safeguard Security has acquired New Mexico Security Services, headquartered in Santa Fe, N.M., Safeguard CEO John Jennings told Security Systems News.

Defender has new CEO; predicts strong growth in 2012

The nation’s No. 1 ADT dealer says this year will be best ever
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04/18/2012

INDIANAPOLIS—Defender Direct, the country’s leading ADT dealer, announced this month that it has restructured its executive team and has a new CEO.

SAFE moves central station, boosts dealer program

Company aims to improve efficiencies with shift to corporate headquarters
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04/18/2012

SAN RAMON, Calif.—SAFE Security has moved its central station to its corporate office here, updating its monitoring technology in the process and bolstering its dealer program to take advantage of the upgrade.

No. 1 ADT dealer: Doing good is good for business

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

David Lindsey, the founder of Indianapolis-based Defender Direct, the nation’s No. 1 ADT dealer, recently stepped down from his position as CEO to focus on philanthropic mission work and encourage other companies to do the same. He said that will not only help companies do good—but it will do good for their business by increasing things like company dynamics and productivity.

Lindsey is one of the founders of Companies With A Mission, which its web site describes as “a movement dedicated to helping business leaders create opportunities for employees and their families to reap the rewards of service.”

At Defender, which he founded in 1998, Lindsey has had a more informal focus on mission work. Over the past five years, he said, Defender has sent several thousand people down to Mexico to help build 125 homes for the needy there.

Now Lindsey is formally devoting himself to philanthropy as Defender’s chief missions officer. “I look at much of what I’m doing as still an extension of the Defender story,” he told me. “We’ve always been a giving and a missional company and I’m trying to just continue to focus on that piece right now.”

He called Companies With A Mission a “ministry” and said, “We’re taking a lot of things that have been a blessing and powerful for our company and sharing them with other companies …right now our main focus is on U.S. companies [and some Canadian as well], but we do see it as a worldwide effort.”

One plan, he said, is to take as many as 100 business leaders and their families on mission trips to Mexico or the Dominican Republic by the end of the year, “so they can have a mission experience.”

A second objective, he said, is a “service challenge” the ministry is extending to companies. One challenge is in Indianapolis and another will be in New Orleans this fall, he said.

Companies are challenged to put teams together to go out and do community service work at nonprofits, then submit short videos of their work and answer three questions on the ministry’s web site to win prize money for their favorite charities.

In Indianapolis, Lindsey said he expects as many as 100 teams to compete for $100,000 in prize money.

Obviously the charities benefit, but how does that help the businesses?

Lindsey said he knows philanthropy helps companies because Defender tested the service challenge among its own employees before taking it citywide.

“It was a huge success,” he told me. “We worried that during the time we had everyone out doing projects, we’d have our sales go down but actually we’ve had six record months since we started the contest, the two months that we were in the contest, and then the four after.”

He added: “What we attribute that to is we just changed the water cooler conversion at our office. Everybody was buzzing and talking about their service project” [and what other teams were doing] … There’s nothing like the workplace going out and serving together—what that does for the work dynamic is really almost unbelievable.”

He said about half Defender’s teams are continuing to do community service on a regular basis. “It just brings a life and a spirit into our company that’s making a difference, and we want to share that with more companies and help them see that increased productivity, as well as the retention, recruiting and loyalty … that has been enhanced by this,” Lindsey said.

Bonifas heading home after being stranded on remote island

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Talk about overages.

Stranded on a remote island in the South Atlantic with more than 70 other travelers, Bob Bonifas had the distinction of being the only person with a satellite phone. That meant using a lot of minutes: about 1,500 as of Wednesday, with five or six more days of dialing ahead until the group finally gets back to the mainland.

Bonifas, president and CEO of Aurora, Ill.-based Alarm Detection Systems, is among 73 passengers who were diverted to South Georgia Island last week aboard Plancius, a 293-foot polar cruise ship. The vessel was en route from Argentina to Ascension Island on a 31-day sightseeing tour, but engine problems brought the trip to an early end. That resulted in nine-day stay on South Georgia, a desolate former whaling outpost near Antarctica that doesn’t have much to offer beyond gulls and grass.

The layover wasn't easy for Bonifas.

“He’s not a guy who sits around a lot,” said Connie Busby, Bonifas' daughter, who told Security Systems News on Tuesday that she had talked to her father every day of his layover via his satellite phone. “On the nice days like yesterday—he said it was 45 and sunny—they did get out and do some hiking. There’s a chapel on the island that’s not inhabited, and they went to that on Sunday and just kind of hung out for awhile.”

A chartered relief ship picked up Bonifas and his fellow passengers Wednesday and is bringing them to Uruguay. They are expected to arrive on April 24.

Bonifas isn’t a stranger to spending time in remote places. He is ranked No. 3 on MostTraveledPeople.com, a website that tracks adventurers trying to become the first to visit 872 global destinations. South Georgia Island was the 800th destination for Bonifas, but his quest is on hold while he bides his time and tacks on phone minutes.

“When you’re an extreme world traveler, I guess sooner or later it kind of catches up to you, and I guess it did this time,” Busby said.  

Mapping CO legislation—and business opportunities

A new interactive map by System Sensor tracks CO laws as they’re enacted state by state, helping dealers identify new markets for the devices
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04/17/2012

ST. CHARLES, Ill.—Dealers and installers: It’s now easier than ever to keep up to date on new carbon-monoxide detector legislation that can lead to increased business, thanks to a revised interactive CO map developed by System Sensor.

Devcon moves to ‘streamline,’ ‘trim’ after rapid growth

After recently expanding to 50 branches nationwide, Devcon now plans more strategic growth, according to new CEO
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04/11/2012

HOLLYWOOD, Fla.—After a rapid expansion during the past 18 months, Devcon Security is streamlining its business but is still planning to grow nationwide, according to the company’s new CEO, Steve Hafen.

Modern System Concepts likes communicator

IP and cellular communications growing in popularity
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04/11/2012

LAS VEGAS—Phone lines were causing problems on a project that Modern System Concepts undertook to upgrade a utility provider’s fire systems, said Mark Popkowski, company owner and president. That’s why Popkowski said Modern, based in Katy, Texas, is turning to Fire-Lite’s IPGSM-DP fire alarm communicator as a solution.

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