Windy City market to rival Big Apple for SST
OAKBROOK, Ill. - Ten years after opening a satellite office here to serve its growing base of both guard and electronic security customers, Intercon Security has handed off the electronic security portion of its business to sister company Security Services & Technologies.
The early August handoff enables SST to focus on growing the security systems integration business, its area of expertise, while Intercon Security, a Toronto-based company, will handle the guard business. Both companies are part of FirstService Corp., a $600 million service-based company that provides property management and home services, such as lawn care, painting and closet organizers.
Company officials expect big things in Chicago, an area that could become one of SSTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s largest markets, second only to its New York location. John Nemerofsky, president of national accounts and the Northern Mid-Atlantic region for SST, said it has the potential to reach between $15 million and $18 million in sales each year, whereas the entire company of SST estimates hitting $60 million in sales for 2003.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“New York was a big explosion for us,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Nemerofsky. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We see it close behind.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Over the years, Intercon Security built a solid base of customers in the Chicago market, said Nemerofsky. While Intercon Security provided great customer service, he said, managing both guard and electronic security in the United States proved different than in Canada, where the company is successful at both.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“In the states they are a very strong guard provider, but were challenged to get their electronics going,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Nemerofsky.
The company focused on selling an Intercon Security manufactured access control product as part of the companyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s turnkey security solution approach that included installation, products and guard service. Now, under the auspices of SST, the office will offer customers off the shelf products for access control and other integrated security solutions.
To reach its multi-million dollar goal in Chicago, SST is already in the process of increasing staff in Oakbrook, Ill., with plans to hire additional people to focus on the electronic security market. Over the next several months, Nemerofsky expects to grow from a dozen employees to 30 people.
The company operates six offices in North America, with locations in New York, Eatontown, N.J., Norristown and Reading, Pa., Alexandria, Va., and here.
The companyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s newest office, in Baltimore, is scheduled to open Oct. 1.
Related story: SST adds Baltimore area office