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Wayne Alarm Acquires High-End Resi Specialist Lexington Alarm Systems

Wayne Alarm picks up 8,700 subscribers, mostly in high-end and exclusive residential neighborhoods in the greater Boston area.

LYNN, Mass. — Wayne Alarm Systems, based here, has acquired Lexington Alarm Systems of Bedford, Mass., for undisclosed terms.

Lexington Alarm specializes primarily in custom-designed security systems for high-end and exclusive residential neighborhoods in the greater Boston area. Founded in 1972 by Donald Martini, the company has approximately 8,700 clients. Its subscriber base consists of a 75%/25% mix of residential and commercial accounts, respectively, totaling more than $200,000 in recurring monthly revenue (RMR).

Wayne Alarm President Ralph Sevinor tells SSI that Martini first approached him to discuss the potential for striking a deal.

“Lexington Alarm is a very interesting company. Our strategic goal is not to be multistate; our goal is to really focus in on Massachusetts, so this fit right into our plan. Don came to us and said, ‘We want Wayne Alarm to acquire us.’ We were quite pleased about that,” Sevinor says.

Lexington Alarm will continue operations at its current location in Bedford under the direction of Mike Lordan, vice president, who has been with the company for about 25 years. About 30 employees will be retained, including back office support and technicians. Along with its design, installation and service portfolio, the company manufacturers its own custom window screen material enmeshed with special wire that can be connected into a system’s protective circuit.

Martini will stay aboard to serve during a transitionary period.

“We are going to keep him involved as long as he wants to be involved. Don has worked so hard, customer by customer. That work ethic in our industry is unfortunately going by the wayside. It is turning into big business,” Sevinor says. “He shares the same vision of quality that we do, and so we look at this more as a merger than an acquisition.”

Lexington Alarm customer accounts will be transferred to Wayne Alarm’s UL-Listed central station, although the company did operate its own monitoring center. Wayne Alarm has yet to decide if it will maintain the center as a back-up facility.

“Our goal is to offer a lot of the technology that they don’t have. For example, a unified platform for customer service and more services like video and access control. We are a UL-listed company and they were not. We will be able to do a lot more services for their account base as well,” Sevinor explains.

What won’t change is the Lexington Alarm brand in the market, says Wayne Alarm Director of Marketing Brandon Freedman.

“Lexington has been around for 45 years. The company has a great brand name and lots of recognition within the community. We are keeping the brand name,” he says. “There is so much to be learned on both sides. They have some great processes at the company. It’s really a merger of both companies and taking the best from both.”

Martini tells SSI he was highly selective in identifying a potential acquirer for his company. Wayne Alarm made for a good cultural fit, he says, given the company’s customer-centric approach.

“Wayne Alarm takes care of customers the same we do. They are really hot on answering peoples’ questions quickly and not letting the phone ring multiple times. No auto attendant. That is the kind of thing that appeals to my customers so it appeals to me,” he says. “The other thing is Ralph wanted all of our employees. He recognized their skills. Licensed employees are like gold. We have some tremendous talent in the office. We are very efficient. For me it was the best of both worlds. It wasn’t just selling out to somebody for a big number and walking away and too bad for the customers and too bad for the employees.”

During the transition, Martini will work to acquaint Wayne Alarm to the uniqueness of his company’s business model. He will also be personally involved in introducing some of his “A list” customers to Wayne Alarm personnel. As for letting go of the reins of a company he founded more than four decades ago, Martini says the impact of it all hasn’t quite hit him yet. But he is at peace with his decision to sell and confident he found the right buyer.

“It is a good solution to something that I worried about for a number of years. What would I do? I’ve made promises to all these people that we are going to take care of them,” he says. “There weren’t a lot of good options out there. So this was really a match made in heaven.”

About the Author

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Although Bosch’s name is quite familiar to those in the security industry, his previous experience has been in daily newspaper journalism. Prior to joining SECURITY SALES & INTEGRATION in 2006, he spent 15 years with the Los Angeles Times, where he performed a wide assortment of editorial responsibilities, including feature and metro department assignments as well as content producing for latimes.com. Bosch is a graduate of California State University, Fresno with a degree in Mass Communication & Journalism. In 2007, he successfully completed the National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association’s National Training School coursework to become a Certified Level I Alarm Technician.

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