VTI Security anticipates 25 percent revenue growth

Sales process and IT smarts are key
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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS—The recent acquisition of Colorado-based Systems Integration Corp. is only one of the reasons VTI Security is projecting a 25 percent growth spurt in 2013, VTI CEO Thomas Asp told Security Systems News.

VTI’s 2012 revenues are approximately $32 million. While the addition of SIC will help bump that up, other major contributors to VTI’s growth are its IT-centric capabilities and a sales approach that de-emphasizes specific products, said Bryan Viau, EVP at VTI.

Asp prefers to open a new office near an existing customer base rather than acquire, but the SIC deal, completed in November, made sense from the product perspective and the personnel perspective as well.

“The technology they led with on video and access matches up to platforms we support,” Asp said. “We are able to support their accounts with our field technicians, and their field technicians … can support ours.”

SIC’s operations were easily folded into VTI’s existing office in Golden, Colo.

Headquartered here, VTI has three offices in Colorado and branch offices in Milwaukee, Cheyenne, Wyo., and Amarillo, Texas.

All branches were opened because of a customer request. The Amarillo office, previously staffed with three technicians, is now adding a salesperson.

“This will help us take on additional customers and [give us] an opportunity to spread from Amarillo to other areas in the west Texas-Oklahoma area,” Asp said.

VTI may do more acquisitions in the future, but it is more likely to open offices near strong customer bases. “If a customer appreciates the service we provide, [and if serving that customer] can sustain technical support in some other region or geography, then we are very interested [in opening up an office,” he said.

SIC’s approach to technology and sales was similar to VTI’s as well.

Asp described VTI’s sales process as “more collaborative and business-solutions-oriented than product sales.”

VTI derives RMR from its IT services, including remotely monitoring the health of large enterprise systems. “We do our own network servicing … in addition to the physical security,” Viau said.

“Our RMR model focuses on the IT side of services versus the traditional alarm monitoring side,” he said.

VTI caters to large enterprises that tend to monitor their own sites. “What VTI does is monitor the health of the systems on the network and the network itself,” Asp explained. “Our biggest asset is detailed engineering and IT support.” Customers typically use their IT integrator, which VTI supports.

Jack Morris founded VTI in 1980. Asp joined the company in 1986 and became majority owner in 2006. The company has 140 employees, including Cisco-certified wireless/CCNA technicians. All technicians take network training.

Asp believes it’s important for clients to understand the value of VTI’s high-end design services and for systems integrators to charge appropriately for those services.

Customers are looking for a commitment from their security integrator, “but we look for the same commitment in return. The reason VTI is successful is because of long-term relationships we have with the majority of clients [many whom we’ve worked with] since the start of the company in the 1980s,” he said.