Matrix Systems splits, creates Frontier and Xentry

Frontier will be manufacturing division, Xentry will be a systems integrator
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Monday, January 13, 2014

MIAMISBURG, Ohio—Matrix Systems’ transformation, which began last year when Holly Tsourides took on the role of CEO, continued Jan. 6, when Tsourides announced that the company is creating two separate lines of business: Frontier, a manufacturing business and Xentry Systems Integration, a systems integrator.

Matrix Systems, based here, has historically been a provider of access control, although it did do some integration work for longtime customers.

“We had two different models that were intertwined and that were restricting growth,” Tsourides said. “In the security industry, customers and partners want to know, ‘Are you a channel business or a direct service business?’ The answer is that we were both … and both assets were not being maximized,” she said. “It became clear that for long-term growth we need to decouple the businesses and that’s what we’ve done.”

The two divisions will be separate P&Ls.

Xentry (pronounced Zen-tree) is Matrix’s “rebranded services business with very distinct geographic boundaries: the Great Lakes area and southern Florida [where the company has existing long-time customers],” Tsourides explained.

Xentry is not looking to expand beyond those boundaries any time soon. “The No. 1 priority is to build density [in those regions].  … There’s a lot of work to do and a lot of opportunity to build out our capabilities as a true systems integrator,” she said.

Xentry’s first official day of business is expected to be April 1. “We’ll be taking the next three months to communicate with our existing clients [about] how this will impact them. We’ll also start work on the sales and marketing side and recruit a leader [for both Xentry and Frontier],” she said. Its customers include the nation’s two largest steel companies, health care entities, and Smuckers, a $4 billion conglomerate.

Xentry will also be the exclusive reseller for Frontier in its regions. “So the clients [in those areas] will have the continuity of services they’ve been accustomed to, and they’ll have the opportunity to get more services from Xentry than they ever did from Matrix,” Tsourides said.

As Tsourides has previously said, Frontier is being developed into more than an access control system. Frontier is expected to introduce its new integrated platform, a unified access control and video management system, in the third quarter. “To call it the new version of Frontier is an understatement. The look and feel will be completely different,” Tsourides said.

It will be a truly integrated platform, not just an interface between systems, she emphasized.

Importantly, Frontier channel partners will have restricted territories. “We will work with customers to build demand in their territories, [and we will transition some existing customers] to these partners as well,” she said.

Asked about its plans to secure outside funding for growth, Tsourides said the company is actively exploring new funding options.