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Annual exclusive content from SDM including SDM 100 Report, Dealer of the Year, State of the Market Series, and more!

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    Video surveillance, for all its clear benefits, comes with its equal share of barriers: storage limitations, image quality and resolution demands, price concerns, a painfully absent ease-of-use. There’s a whole list.

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    For years, the physical security industry has predicted the “tipping point” in the video surveillance market as the point in time when Internet protocol (IP) video will outsell analog video. But are you paying attention to the other tipping point? Yes, access control has a tipping point of its own — the point when smart cards will outsell legacy cards.

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    There are no flashy changes or broad shifts to be found in the fire alarm market in 2012. In fact, in a lot of ways, the 2012 fire alarm market looks very similar to the 2011 market. Despite a lack of healthy construction in the commercial space, the industry continues to move forward — supported by code requirements, mandatory inspections, insurance incentives, and the simple unremitting need for life safety.

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    The SDM 100 has been published since 1991. Its primary objective is to measure consumer dollars gained by alarm companies, in order to present an account of the size of the market captured by the 100 largest security providers. SDM 100 firms are ranked by their recurring monthly revenue. RMR is the amount of contractually recurring revenues due from customers, for such services as monitoring, contracted service and system maintenance, and leasing of security systems.

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  • 05/20/12--22:55: 2012 SDM 100: The List
  • The 2012 SDM 100 ranks U.S. companies that provide electronic security systems and services to both residential and non-residential customers. This ranking is based on information provided to or, in few cases, estimated by SDM. Ranked companies were asked to submit either an audited or reviewed financial statement, or a copy of their income tax return showing total gross receipts for the stated period. The vast majority of the firms ranked are privately held.

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    Not only does the SDM 100 now have a new top 3, but signs of the SDM 100 becoming more of a services-focused business model are apparent. Since the SDM 100 began ranking security companies by their recurring monthly revenue (RMR) in 2007, the top three companies have been ADT, Protection 1 and Monitronics (with the exception of Brink’s Home Security/Broadview, which subsequently was acquired by ADT).

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    Security system dealers and integrators are being tasked with determining a solution that helps staff members both feel safer in their work environment and become proactive about their personal security as well as those around them. Today, dealers and integrators can choose to leverage an enterprise mobile duress system for increased employee protection.

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    In systems integrator circles, Convergint Technologies is a company that people admire. Homegrown by Greg Lernihan, president and co-founder, and Dan Moceri, CEO and co-founder, Convergint was born of a strategic plan that centered on a core platform of values and beliefs.

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    Talk to a Protection 1 employee and there is a palpable energy that radiates outward about their job, the company and the customer. Chicago-based Protection 1, has always contained a deep-rooted love for the customer. But while employees embraced the concept, the execution was missing, as Protection 1 experienced declining growth for seven consecutive years.

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    Steady and rapid growth in the dealer program market, like the kind Security Networks, SDM’s 2012 Dealer of the Year Honoree, has had in recent years requires more than a good marketing program or exciting services. Security Networks, West Palm Beach, Fla., prides itself on an average of 40 percent growth year-over-year for the past eight years, its president, Richard Perry, tells SDM.

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    Winning a security project today is a bit like playing a game of chess. With every potential job, you face a wide variety of opponents (competitors) who have an even wider variety of moves (security offerings/competitive advantages), all aimed at putting your king into checkmate; in effect, freezing you out of the job.

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    Two tiny acronyms: IT and IP. A3 Communications, Irmo, S.C., is an expert in both. Founded as an information technology (IT) company 20 years ago by chief executive officer (CEO) Joe Thomas, the company added Internet protocol (IP)-based surveillance and access control to its portfolio in 2005.

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    For every challenge the alarm industry overcomes, another pops up, almost like a fast and furious game of Whac-A-Mole. “Whack!” The industry beats the advanced mobile phone service (AMPS) technology sunset in 2008.

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    The average access control system lasts 10 years. Additionally, the average customer wants to do more with less within continuingly tight budgets.


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    Someone once suggested that to get an invitation to a party you really wanted to attend you should offer to contribute something to the party. If the video market’s predicted strong year in 2014 is the kind of “party” access control is hoping to attend, then the market has tapped into that principle, contributing a strong argument for security systems that integrate both video and access control.


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    Argus Control, located in Brasilia, Brazil, was having issues with its inventory. To combat it, they turned to ECKey, Lancaster, Pa.


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    SDM Systems Integrator of the Year honoree acts like a small company and thereby creates customer intimacy while at the same time functions like a large, mature company in terms of processes and standardization.


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    Kastle Systems was founded on core principles of service and innovation, and in 2007 new owners expanded on that. Today, their commitment to constantly improving customers’ experiences and their delivery of exciting new technologies win them SDM’s 2015 Systems Integrator of the Year award.


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    At Kastle Systems, the service mantra gets far more than lip service. It is at the core of everything the company does.


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    Video surveillance, for all its clear benefits, comes with its equal share of barriers: storage limitations, image quality and resolution demands, price concerns, a painfully absent ease-of-use. There’s a whole list.

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