Fire firm sees growth in security

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Saturday, June 1, 2002

CHANTILLY, Va.-Engineered systems distributor Gage-Babcock & Associates moved into larger headquarters here, a facility that enabled the company to hire more employees and expand its modeling capabilities.

The new headquarters increased space by more than 50 percent for the 50-year-old company, one of the oldest fire firms in the industry.

"It was the strong growth in both our security and fire protection services and the addition of new staff," that prompted the need for a bigger facility, said Doug Rollman, vice president of business development for Gage-Babcock.

The employee owned company operates seven offices throughout North America and employs 75 people. Those locations include a headquarters here that services the Washington, D.C. area and offices in New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Vancouver, British Columbia.

In the last year alone, Gage-Babcock has grown 15 percent, with 10 new employees added, said Rollman.

While the company's focus is the design of fire systems, the security side of the company is where company officials are seeing the largest share of growth. Though security was added more than 20 years ago, the company has now hired a corporate director of security services who oversees its consulting and engineering services on the security side. The company will also design security systems, but does not install or integrate them.

"A lot of the growth focused now in security is in the pure consulting side," said Rollman. That includes providing crisis management and emergency action plans for corporations. The company designs upgrades for businesses that want to expand their security system.

Rollman said new offices may be added in other markets in the coming year, but he was unable to share details.