GHS expands into southern California market

The door-knocking company is adding some traditional resi and light commercial sales to its mix and ramping up its Independent Partner program
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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

SACRAMENTO, Calif.—GHS Interactive Security, a new home security company based here, announced this week that it is expanding into southern California with the hire of Shaun Carpenter, an industry veteran who has run large dealer programs in that area for the past 10 years.

Carpenter is now president of GHS’ new southern division, the company said Feb. 3.

“Bringing someone as talented as Shaun in, you go straight from startup to varsity in that market because of his experience and his ability to run all aspects of the business,” John Bergher, GHS vice president of marketing and customer care, told Security Systems News.

GHS, founded in May 2013 by industry veteran and CEO Steve Baker, is primarily a year-round door-knocking company. But Bergher said that, due to Carpenter’s previous experience, he also brings “a standard residential as well as a light commercial sales approach, so we’re going to grow that through the company as well.”

Baker formed GHS for the purpose of acquiring Sacramento-based Lifeline Security and Automation as a platform for growth. The principals of Lifeline, Gordon Johnson and John Fox, became members of the GHS executive team.

GHS also has an office in Dallas that opened last summer. Bergher described the expansion into the Dallas/Fort Worth region as so successful it was “double budget within the first few months.”

The company also has been successful in northern California, but it had its eye on the southern California market too. However, it was not ready to launch there until it signed on Carpenter, Bergher said.

“We know the market has a lot of potential but we knew it was going to take the right person, the right leader, and it was really more of waiting for that right person who could run the business to our expectations and bring it up to speed quickly,” Bergher explained.

Carpenter told SSN, “I’m really excited to join GHS.” He said it is “a privilege and an honor” to join the company, which he said has a “different mindset” from other door-knocking companies because of the attention it pays to customers. “That’s one of the key things in this business—you see a lot of people in it for the quick buck, but our focus is primarily on customer service,” he said.

The expansion into southern California is purely organic and involves no acquisitions, Bergher said.

Carpenter said the company will have an office in Orange County and another in the Inland Empire, as the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario metropolitan area east of Los Angeles is called. Post-recession, the housing market is growing there, he said.

“Shaun is exactly the type of leader GHS is looking for. He is energetic, positive, focused on clients and above all, he wants to deliver world class service. We have been looking at expanding into southern California; bringing in Shaun made this possible,” Baker said, in a prepared statement.

According to a company news release, “under GHS, the Orange County/Inland Empire market strategy will focus on high quality account creation, customer service and this will all be enhanced by the GHS customer care and marketing efforts.”

The company also has hired Eli Melendrez as director of operations, expanding its operations department. Melendrez has more than 20 years of experience in all aspects of the residential and commercial markets as well as a distinguished career in law enforcement, the company said.

In a statement, Craig Weingartner, CFO of GHS, called Melendez not only a “skilled operations leader,” but also a “passionate and consummate professional.”

GHS also is ramping up its Independent Partner program in 2014, which the company describes as a “unique and nimble” model. Bergher explained that the company provides the support system while the partners “play to their strengths of sales and customer service.”

The company said talent acquisition is high on its priority list and its team is looking forward to meeting potential partners at ISC West in Las Vegas in April.

“Our team is excited to present the tremendous economic opportunity of joining GHS to all potential partners and employees at ISC.  It’s going to be an amazing year,” Baker said, in a prepared statement.