CSI launches security division
ANAHEIM, Calif.—Instead of contracting out all of the physical security work on the jobs it does, CSI Electrical Contractors, a $100 million electrical contractor based here, decided last January to bring security expertise in house.
Raul Carlos, VP of Technology Solutions, hired security industry veteran Daniel Kozich to help develop the security solutions group. Along with Kozich came Jeremy Kutsch, another security industry veteran.
In the past several years CSI had delved into voice, data, building management systems and specialty electrical services. The next step was physical security work. “You have more control of the final product and the gross profit is larger,” Carlos said.
Carlos’s Technology Solutions Group is made up of BICSI RCDD, ESS and OSP professionals who design and install horizontal and backbone distribution cabling systems in compliance with ANS/EIA/TIA standards. Its capabilities include voice, OSP, riser management, data, sound masking wireless networks, audio/video, paging, TI & DSL extensions, fiber optics, design and consulting, and MAC work. As of January, it also includes surveillance systems, access control, and intrusion systems.
While the security solutions group is starting from the ground up in some ways, Kozich has all of the resources of the technology solutions group at his disposal. There are 30 people in the CSI low-voltage group who can work on security solutions, and the engineering group provides “every tool and resource available from the electrical side,” Kozich said. He added, “It’s a far cry from the mom-and-pop type typical integrator.”
Initially, the security group is specializing in certain products. It has an alliance various local integrators and some other national companies for certain projects, and it will still partner with another integrator and do parts-and-smarts when certain spec solutions are outside of its current specialty area, Kozich explained.
Thus far, CSI has done security work in a variety of verticals including higher education and hospitality, aerospace, pharmaceutical and entertainment. It just completed an 85-camera system for a 4.5 star hotel in Santa Monica, Calif. Kozich used Mobotix cameras and Pivot3 storage on that job. It’s a project that should have taken three months to complete, but CSI was able to finish it within eight weeks, Kozich said. “If you organize and manage it properly, it can be done,” he said.
Eventually, Carlos would like security to make up 15- to 20 percent of its overall business. “It does take some time to gain traction, and to get the word out ... that we’re now offering these services in house,” he said.