Kenco acquires in Bozeman

Montana security company also installs security system in the All-American Home built to showcase American-made products
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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

BILLINGS, Mont.—Kenco Security and Technology, an electronic security company based here, recently acquired Securitec Safety Systems of Bozeman, said Dirk Bauwens, president of Kenco.

Also, Kenco recently installed a DMP security system in the All-American Home, a new home being built in Bozeman with products that are predominantly American-made. The project is designed to encourage consumers to buy products made in the United States, increasing jobs here.

Kenco already has an office in Bozeman, but the Jan. 31 acquisition of the 43-year-old Securitec, which had approximately 500 accounts, gives Kenco more of a foothold there, Bauwens said.

“It doubles our market share up in Bozeman,” he told Security Systems News.

 Securitec was formerly owned by Dale Miller, who started it in 1969, just four years before Kenco was established in 1973. “We just got to know each other’s companies well by good business practices and he stated that, ‘When I retire, I want to sell to Kenco,’ and [when Miller was ready to retire] he basically called us up and we got a deal together,” Bauwens said. Both companies had a roughly 50-50 mix of residential and commercial customers, he said.

He declined to disclose the terms of the deal.

Kenco, which has about 10,000 customers in Montana and northern Wyoming, had already opened an office in Bozeman about a decade ago, Bauwens said. He said the company previously serviced its large account with the University of Montana in Bozeman from Billings, about 125 miles away.

Bauwens said Kenco, which has about 70 employees, has added Miller’s former two employees to its staff. “Our biggest offering [to customers] is that he was a small company and we’re able to offer now a lot more services with the backing of a larger staff,” Bauwens said.

Securitec had a “great reputation” and many of its customers had been with the company for years, he said.

Just a year ago, Kenco acquired Anchor Alarms of Kalispell, gaining 800 mostly residential accounts and expanding its presence in northwestern Montana.

Kenco this past year also accepted an invitation from DMP to install the security system in the All-American Home in Bozeman.

Digital Monitoring Products (DMP) was selected to provide the security system for the home because that manufacturer’s XT Series burglary/fire/door access panel chosen for the home, like all DMP products, is designed and made in Springfield, Mo., according to a news release from DMP.

Anders Lewendal, a former economist who is now a builder, is constructing the 2,200-square-foot, three-bedroom home entirely from U.S.-made products to illustrate the benefits of buying domestic goods, DMP said.

Bauwens said Kenco was selected to install the system because it’s a DMP dealer. Kenco also is a Honeywell First Alert Professional dealer and carries Bosch products as well, he said. “We select the right product for the right application,” he said.

He said Kenco completed installing the system in January.

Kenco has a 24-hour monitoring center in Billings along with its headquarters, and, in addition to Bozeman, has offices in Helena and Great Falls, Mont., as well as in Cody, Wyo.