A familiar name makes a return - National Guardian

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Sunday, February 1, 2004

NORWALK, Conn.— One of the more recognizable names in the security market has made a comeback.

The National Guardian Security name has been resurrected by the former chief executive officer of the original, $200 million a year company. George Flagg, chief executive officer and president of the new National Guardian, saw an opportunity for a well-known and once established name to return in 2003 after it went unused.

Flagg said the National Guardian business had changed hands several times, first through an acquisition by SecurityLink, which was then later sold to Cambridge Protection. Cambridge was then sold to Tyco, which did not renew licensing of the name, he said.

So in 2002, Flagg bought a systems integration firm with a central station called APT Services in Texas. Six months later, Flagg changed APT Services’ name to National Guardian.

Now, Flagg has embarked on launching a dealer program, of sorts, for the systems integration market. But unlike the typical dealer program, where dealers sell their accounts, Flagg is looking to monitor their residential accounts. He also wants to partner with them for subcontracting work for national accounts. These same companies will then be able to buy security products through a group discount.

“It would be nice to build something and create opportunity for people,” said Flagg.

So far, seven dealers have joined the organization. Three dealers located in Texas are giving National Guardian a larger presence than just its current Richardson, Texas, branch and central station.

Integrators in North Carolina, Florida, Washington and Virginia have also come on board as part of the program.

Flagg declined to say how many accounts the company’s central station monitors, but said it’s in the several thousand range. That location employs 30 people, while the entire National Guardian company has a staff of 50.

Current national accounts include food-chain Cracker Barrel, craft store Hobby Lobby and a store called Duckwall Alco.

Flagg expects to increase the revenues by “at least 50 to 75 percent over the next couple of years,” and hopes to do that by establishing a network of integrators across the country.