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Maine provider keeps on growing

Cunningham Security Systems to acquire
 - 
01/07/2015

YARMOUTH, Maine—Residential and commercial provider Cunningham Security Systems anticipates acquiring 2,000 monitored accounts by the end of the first quarter of 2015.

Thank you and happy holidays

 - 
Tuesday, December 23, 2014

For those of you who have been following my blog, you may know that I haven’t been in the industry very long. But, in the past couple months, I’ve been trying my best to learn as much as I can about the industry.

As such, I’ve picked up things here and there that make a lot of sense to me. A poignant summation of the purpose behind it all came from Chris Newhook, central station manager for American Alarm and Communications when I visited recently; that monitoring is about comfort, making sure people feel—and are—safe at all times.

So this blog post goes out as a recognition to the people in the central stations this holiday, making sure that others are safe, and providing that same level of care and comfort as any other day.

Especially to those individuals, but to everyone else in the industry as well: Thank you and happy holidays.

Five Questions: Chad Swain

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12/23/2014

Chad Swain is the new general manager of Protection 1’s Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio, markets. His experience elsewhere ranges from commercial sales and installation manager to executive sales trainer, senior vice president of sales and regional general manager. Swain also owned and operated his own company as a manufacturer and distributor of security products including video, IP and HD cameras and DVRs. In November, Security Systems News caught up with Chad and asked him five questions.

American Alarm and Communications’ unique approach

Unique in central station composition to employee outlook
 - 
12/17/2014

ARLINGTON, Mass.—For American Alarm, it’s not just about the growth of the company, but an invested growth in the individual—which, itself, facilitates company growth. The company on Dec. 15 hosted a visit for a new Security Systems News editor.

Touring and learning about an industry

 - 
Wednesday, December 17, 2014

American Alarm and Communications, a full-service security company with a central station based in Arlington, Mass., was kind enough to host me Dec. 15 to help me learn about the industry I recently signed on to cover.

Maria Moretti, command center manager, Chris Newhook, central station manager, and Keith Hunt, technical manager, led my visit. Starting with a tour of the administrative offices, then into the “Command Center.” Ending with a session of observing central station operators.

Being new to the industry, there was a lot of value for me in witnessing first-hand the everyday workings of a central station, learning the exact process by which alarms come in and are handled by the operators.

In an industry that is changing, faster almost every year, especially as newer technologies are introduced and updated, there are more openings to pursue, explained Newhook, expanding opportunities for security company employees.  

American Alarm encourages its employees to follow whichever growth path they are more geared towards. This approach, from my perspective, makes the industry seem more dynamic in a positive way—one of supported exploration.

“If you've been in it long enough, you won't just have one job, you wear many hats,” said Hunt.

One thing I can say is that I find the industry to be one thing in particular—easy to learn about. It is full of good people, such as those at American Alarm and Communications; people pushing themselves to help others learn and adapt.

Speco launches factory outlet

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

New York-based Speco Technologies, which provides residential and commercial video surveillance, electronics accessories and audio products, has opened an online factory outlet store.

That’s right, a factory outlet store.

Security Systems News, being just down the road a piece from Freeport, Maine, one of the nation’s outlet meccas, knows a thing or two about factory outlet stores. A lot. But an outlet security store? Hmmm. That’s interesting. Is this a new trend?

Speco’s online outlet store will offer limited-inventory closeout and refurbished items at “bargain prices,” according to a statement from the company.

A perusal of the e-store site found a variety of indoor and outdoor cameras, monitors, NVRs and power supplies and switchers, among other products.  

Specostore.com is a full e-commerce site with SSL encryption, which allows users to browse and purchase products and track and follow up on orders, all through a secure login, the company says. All products sold through Specostore.com will have a 90-day warranty.

A call into Speco wasn’t answered by press time, but we’ll certainly update if we can.

Security investment and finance in ’14

New players and investors enter security industry, show interest in innovative pricing and business models, expanded services
 - 
12/12/2014

YARMOUTH, Maine—Valuations, at least for smaller security deals, were generally higher in 2014 compared to 2013. That is one area of agreement among three security finance and investment experts who participated in a Security Systems News virtual round table.

Meet the End Users ‘20 under 40’ Class of 2014

 - 
12/12/2014

YARMOUTH, Maine—As we do each year, we asked readers to nominate their brightest young security up-and-comers, and we hit the jackpot.

Penn's gov-elect will pay for own security at private residence

 - 
Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Pennsylvania's governor-elect, Tom Wolf, plans to use his own money to rent office space for state police security officers to guard him at his private residence, according to a Wolf transition team spokesman.

We here at Security Systems News would also like to know what security technology Wolf already has in place, or will be putting in place, at his home in light of this announcement.

An Associated Press report said that Wolf, who has has declined to live at the official governor’s residence in Harrisburg, will pay out of his own pocket to secure his personal residence in Mount Wolf, about 20 miles south of Harrisburg.

Wolf, who takes office Jan. 20, will personally pay the rent for space in a building across the street from his home. Wolf transition team spokesman Jeffrey Sheridan told AP that he didn’t know if the security team would be allowed inside Wolf’s residence when he is there.

Wolf, who reported $1.3 million in adjusted gross income in 2013, also has turned down the governor’s salary of $191,000.

Security Systems News has a call in to Wolf’s transition team inquiring about any security technology he may be using. Stay tuned.

Rapid Response hires new people has 'record year'

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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

While searching for what’s new out there, I noticed that a Syracuse publication posted online that Rapid Response Monitoring hired 11 new people.

Upon following up with Christopher Denniston, marketing and communications manager for Rapid Response Monitoring, he stated that 2014 was a year of record growth for Rapid Response—the best year in its history.

“More dealers have chosen to transition to Rapid than ever before and our dealers have also experienced positive organic growth,” Denniston told Security Systems News in an email interview.

“Our people are our greatest asset and our dealer and account growth requires an increase in staff. Our hiring criteria are extremely stringent. We hire only four percent of applicants—the best of the best,” he said.

Rapid Response hired Dustin S. Jesmer, Lishay M. Mack, Carlos M. Valle Wemett, Connor J. Brown, Emily K. Buss, Steve L. Delgado, Amanda S. Lewis, David J. Martin and Aglaeth M. Vazquez as control center specialists. Cathryn M. Mahoney and Olivia N. Nobile were hired as accounting assistants.

Denniston listed further examples of this growth; “Our fully redundant monitoring center in California will have a grand opening in Q1 of 2015 and our headquarters' facility is undergoing an expansion bringing it from 40,000 square feet to 75,000 square feet.”

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