Full speed ahead for Trinity Security’s regional plans

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Thursday, April 1, 2004

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Only a few years after first coming to the market, a local systems integrator has secured a $700,000 round of financing that enables the company to continue with organic growth while looking for acquisition opportunities in the market.
The funding marks the second raising of capital for Trinity Security, which operates under the name of Delta Systems, excluding $500,000 in seed money to start the business. In all the company has raised $2.5 million, money that has helped build a company with three branches today.

Peter Wright and John Keesee started Trinity Security in 2001. Their entrance into the market came in March of 2002 when they bought Action Communications, a systems integrator based here. Two other acquisitions then followed, with the purchase of Delta Systems in Columbia and Greenville, S.C., providing the company with its operating name, while the acquisition of an area Edwards Systems Technology service branch last year strengthened its integrated building system expertise.

The goal, said Wright, president of Trinity Security, is to build a regional integrator within the next five years with a reach from Washington to Orlando. But the immediate future calls for the company to increase its presence in the Carolinas market, followed by Virginia and Georgia. Today the systems integrator employs 45 people with plans to add more than 80 new employees over the next several years.

While the growth expectations may appear to be lofty, especially since company officials hope to build a $100 million company to serve the Southeast region, Wright believes it’s possible. In 1996 he co-founded an information service company called Lionbridge Technologies. Three years later the company went public and by the time he left the company it employed 1,200 people.

Business partner Keesee, on the other hand, comes from an investment banking background and served as chief financial officer of several building product companies.

“The skill sets that are required for the business going forward are more in tune to what John and I have done in the past. It’s more project oriented and relationship oriented,” said Wright. “Customers want to understand how this technology is going to solve problems.”

The management team’s experience played a role in SFJ Ventures’ decision to make an equity investment in Trinity Security, including the 10 to 15 percent expected annual growth rate of the security industry.

“They’ve got a great management team and we feel we’ll be able to capitalize on that growth,” said Janet Cowell, marketing director for SJF Ventures. “They’ve got some good industry experience and entrepreneurial experience.”

SJF Ventures, which looks to invest in companies that offer entry-level jobs, provided $500,000 of the $700,000 round of financing to Trinity Security. The remaining $200,000 came from Venture Capital Solutions, an initial investor in the company.