12 News Stories That Defined 2006

Ah yes, another holiday season is upon us (where the heck did the year go anyway?). Although we are all a year older (and hopefully, wiser), those of us in the electronic security industry have much reason to rejoice, as 2006 was one of the best fiscal years seen around these parts in some time.

According to Security Sales & Integration’s just-released Annual Installation Business Report (the complete results can be seen in the 2007 Top 500 Resource Guide that was distributed with this issue), revenues for installing security contractors increased nearly 19 percent in 2006. Meanwhile, research firm J.P. Freeman and Co., whose Joe Freeman writes SSI’s “By the Numbers” column (see page 12), reports manufacturer and wholesale distributor revenues rose 9 percent.

Apart from the financial gains, what kind of year was 2006 for the industry? I view it as a period of knife sharpening. It was a time when integrators, suppliers and distributors responded to the unique challenges and changes affecting their links of the supply chain. With steely resolve, many refined their strategies and positioned themselves in the marketplace with the precision of a Samurai.

Installing companies continued to consolidate and hire/train personnel on integrated and converging technologies. Manufacturer consolidation slowed, as the focus turned toward integrating existing properties, creating internal synergy, forging partnerships with heretofore rival suppliers and looking for strategic acquisitions to bolster areas of tremendous potential growth (i.e. IP video, analytics). Distributors diversified their product lines to offset the dilution of security integrators due to the influx of electrical and IT distributors (see article on page 30).

Much of this activity was reflected in the news headlines that graced the pages of SSI and its Web site during the year. Before ushering in the New Year, I thought it would be interesting to review the top stories of 2006. I will also offer this thought: Are you doing what you can strategically to be the sharpest knife in your drawer? As you ponder that, here are my monthly picks for the most significant news items of 2006:

Dallas Is Largest City With Verified Response
Note: Only affected commercial accounts

Tyco to Break Off 2 Units, Leaves Fire and Security With Company
Note: Goes into effect early 2007

Mike Snyder Leaves ADT for Vonage
Note: Spent nearly 30 years with ADT

Cisco Systems Networks Into Electronic Security
Note: Buys SyPixx; partners w/ASSA ABLOY

NBFAA Members Vote Down Name Change
Note: Electronic Life Safety & Systems Association (ELSSA) fell by the wayside

Brink’s Breaks Into Commercial Market
Note: Brink’s Business Security launched

Florida Adopts Enhanced Call Verification Policy
Note: Second call made before police dispatch

HID Global to Acquire Fargo Electronics
Note: Access card leader gets larger

iPix Files for Protection, Ceases Operations
Note: Maker of 360° cameras calls it quits

UTC Fire & Security to Acquire Red Hawk
Note: Global supplier adds big integrator to mix

Siemens Acquires VistaScape Security Systems
Note: Global integrator adds “smart” video firm

ADT Seeks Extension of Analog Sunset Deadline
Note: Says Feb. 18, 2008 is too soon

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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is Editor-in-Chief and Associate Publisher of Security Sales & Integration. Well-versed in the technical and business aspects of electronic security (video surveillance, access control, systems integration, intrusion detection, fire/life safety), Goldfine is nationally recognized as an industry expert and speaker. Goldfine is involved in several security events and organizations, including the Electronic Security Association (ESA), Security Industry Association (SIA), Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC), False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA), ASIS Int'l and more. Goldfine also serves on several boards, including the SIA Marketing Committee, CSAA Marketing and Communications Committee, PSA Cybersecurity Advisory Council and Robolliance. He is a certified alarm technician, former cable-TV tech, audio company entrepreneur, and lifelong electronics and computers enthusiast. Goldfine joined Security Sales & Integration in 1998.

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