I would like to remain anon on this. We use Quick Response out of Cleveland Ohio.  I
found out that the company is really named "US Protective" and is a competing dealer.  How do we find out if centrals on your list are competing with us as dealers/installers.
    I think the first issue to consider is, why do you care if the central station has an affiliate installing company, let's call it a retail operation.  So you have a wholesale central station that owns or is closely affiliated with an installing company.  Your obvious concern may be, why should I support a central station that is competing with me for retail business?  What are the pros and cons?
    There are wholesale central stations that do have have any retail operations.  But even these central stations have their favorite dealers and might be inclined to support them in ways that would appear to be unfair to other dealers for whom the central provides monitoring services.  For example a central may get random calls from potential subscribers looking for alarm services.  While some centrals may refuse to provide any information others may have a list of favorites.  You can ask your central station how it handles such inquiries and potential sales opportunities.
    It seems to me that centrals that do have an affiliate company that engages in retail alarm business, or itself engages in direct retail business, may actually be competing against its dealer, though that is not necessarily the case.  Certainly a dealer who is constantly butting heads with a central station for retail business is not likely to want to support that central station.  On the other hand, supporting that central station or not is not likely to change the competition.  
    Choosing a local central station that has its own retail operation may actually be advantageous.  That central may be more familiar with local issues that affect you and may be in a position to assist you in a pinch.  
    One concern that you might have probably need not be a concern.  That is the issue of confidentiality; the central guarding your customer information and making certain that the central and especially its affiliate does not use your customer information to compete against you.  This is a given.  Any central that breaches this trust would loose its dealers as soon as word got out - and it will get out.  So I think a central that has a retail operation probably goes to considerable measures to insure that your proprietary customer information remains private.  By the way, one way to be sure that central stations that do not play by the "rules", act fairly with dealers, is to use the central stations found on The Alarm Exchange, because if there are any real issues they will be removed from their listing.  Sort of a private clearing house for complaints.  So be sure to report problems with any central station, or other category vendor, posted on The Alarm Exchange.
    Since the question involved a particular central station, Quick Response, I offered them the opportunity to respond.  Here's the response, which I believe is satisfactory and sufficient so that you can continue to support this central station with confidence.  It is listed on The Alarm Exchange.
    In response to the question you forwarded to us, I’d like to offer the following answer and explanation.  Specifically relating to U.S. Protective Services and Quick Response; Quick Response is a wholly owned division of U.S. Protective.  It has been ever since its creation in the mid 1990’s.  We have never hidden this fact from our Dealers.  In fact, we are probably one of the few companies that do not hide this information.  Historically, many wholesale central stations are currently (or have been) involved with one or more retail alarm companies; including some of the large players.  Some cover their involvement with different corporations, others just don’t talk about it.
    Could we find ourselves in a competitive situation with one of our dealers; it’s a small possibility. Our company was founded in 1969.  In the mid-90’s we slowed our retail division to concentrate on our wholesale operations (Quick Response).  Today we continue to support many retail subscribers.  We have a few technicians to service those customers, as well as sub-contracting for some of our Dealers.  Our retail sales efforts are focused on keeping ahead of attrition due to our older subscriber base.  In those rare scenarios where there may be competition on a particular quote we proudly state that we are usually not the lowest cost provider.  If we make the sale on a competitive bid situation it is almost never that we are the lowest bid; we win a bid based on our professionalism and the relationships we have with our customers.
    Specifically relative to Quick Response and our Dealers; we keep all subscriber and dealer information completely separate from anything relating to retail operations.  Our Central Station treats U.S. Protective just like any other dealer.  No information is shared between the different staff members outside of normal dealer type of communications.  This has always been the case, our credibility with our Dealers and our own ethical standards demand this.
    When a prospective or current client of ours ask the question posed in your inquiry, I provide them the same answer as I have above.  We service over 400 independent alarm dealers, many in Ohio, and if you question them I think you will conclude that the question posed is truly a non-issue.
Jeff Cohen, President
Quick Response

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Speaking Engagements 



Quick Response Dealer and Integrator Information and Technical Conference.   July 15 -16,  2014 at  Holiday Inn - Independence Ohio.  All alarm dealers are invited.   For more information, schedule and to RSVP contact Margie or Renee at reneet@quickresponse.net or call Margie/Renee at 800 462 5353 www.quickresponse.net
Alarm Association of Greater St. Louis.   September 16, 2014.  at Tech Electronics HQs office at 6437 Manchester  Ave, St. Louis, MO 63139.  Meeting is from 11:45 – 1:30  Video conference presentation starting at 12:15 CST.  For more information or to register contact Tony Drago adrago@tyco.com  www.alarmstl.org/

Alabama Alarm Association.  AAA's Fall Meeting and Trade Show - October 21, 2014 from 3 to 5 PM at DoubleTree Hotel 808 South 20th Street Birmingham, AL 35205  for more info contact AAA Executive Director: director@alabamaalarm.org  (205) 933-9000 


Electronic Security Summit for 2014.  October 22-24, 2014  at the landmark Broadmoor Hotel. Colorado Springs, CO.  For more information contact Alexander J. Quirin, CEO & Managing Partner, Advisory Summit Providers, LLC.,  (786) 999-9738    alex.quirin@aspsummits.com    www.aspsummits.com