ESTA Meetings


Electronic Security & Technology Association (ESTA) 2017 Meeting Explores Industry Trends and Best Practices

With Puget Sound as a backdrop, the Electronic Security and Technology Association (ESTA) held its annual meeting at the Renaissance Hotel in Seattle, WA on April 30 – May 3, 2017. The theme of the meeting was “Grow What You Value,” with a focus on growing your business through new revenue streams generated by new technology.

ESTA’s primary purpose is to serve as a networking and brain-storming organization for owners of smaller-to-midsize electronic security companies. Throughout the four-day event, members shared ideas and best practices in residential and commercial security, emerging trends, new technology, business practices, marketing, and strategies to meet the demands of a changing competitive landscape.

Financial management was the focus of Sunday’s session, with a day-long finacial workshop led by Michael Barnes and Associates. By reviewing a series of metrics and key performance indicators (KPI’s) such as revenue, growth rate, attrition and creation multiples, participating companies were able to benchmark their financial performance with other similar-sized companies as well as the industry at large, with the goal being to operate more efficiently and improve the bottom line.

The session on Monday, May 1, opened with a State-of-the-Industry Report by keynote speaker Michael Barnes, founding partner of Barnes Associates, St. Louis. Barnes presented an insightful security industry overview with forecasts and projections for the coming year. This was followed by a panel discussion on mergers and acquisitions, as well as a Q-and-A session with ESTA counsel, Carl Tannenbaum, of Kleinbard LLC in Philadelphia.

The focus of Tuesday’s session was increasing revenue streams through new trends and technologies. A huge focus for companies across the industry is discovering new sources of RMR in both residential and commercial venues. Members shared how they are using access control as a source of revenue, increasing their services in video surveillance, and using the cloud to offer a competitive advantage. Growth drivers of these services are increased security concerns, improvement in video analytics and availability of IP networks.

Member Josh Dice of Security Alarm in Salem, IL, shared how he is generating new revenue from existing residential customers and Corey Boggs of Richmond Alarm, Midlothian, VA, gave a presentation on how new smart home technologies are changing the residential landscape.

The meeting continued on Wednesday, May 3, with sharing sessions on salaries, compensation models and strategies to attract good employees. At the Wednesday business meeting, new officers were elected to the
ESTA board of directors, including: Corey Boggs, Richmond Alarm; Bruce Kopperud, Comtronix; John Butler, Butler-Durrell Security; Cyndi Miller, Advent Security; Tony Kwiatkowski, Tech Services Security; and Josh Dice, Security Alarm.

One added bonus this year was the presentation of the 􀃶rst ESTA Lifetime Achievement Award to member Bob Helstrom, owner and CEO of Custom Security in Lacey, WA. Helstrom has been an in􀃸uential member of the security industry for more than four decades and is currently ranked #44 on the SDM 100.
ESTA President, Corey Boggs, summed up the event, thanking attendees, sponsors and speakers. “I would like to thank you for making 2017 our most successful ESTA meeting to date,” Boggs said, noting that “ the collective knowledge and experience is invaluable to members.”

Next year’s annual meeting will be held on April 29 – May 2, 2018 in Savannah GA. For ESTA membership information visit the group’s website at

For a pdf of this News Release, CLICK HERE.




ESTA Annual Operations Meeting on November 2-3, 2016 at Embassy Suites O'Hare Rosemont in Chicago, IL

We are pleased to announce that the 2016 Annual ESTA Meeting will be held on May 1-4, 2016 at the Hilton Lake Buena Visa Hotel in Orlando, Florida. (See agenda here) The event starts on Sunday, May 1 with a Financial Analysis Meeting conducted by well-known industry analyst, Michael Barnes. At this meeting, ESTA members will have an opportunity to have their financials analyzed by Barnes Associates and benchmarked against similar-sized companies as well as the industry at large. Monday, May 2 through Wednesday, May 4 will be spent exchanging ideas and best practices among the members, with special guest speakers Michael Barnes, Carl Tannenbaum, Michael Marks from Perennial Software and Dennis Dopp from Videofied.

ESTA is currently seeking new members. If you are interested in attending this meeting or would like more information about membership, contact Karen Mackey at 412.477.3576 or email


We are pleased to announce that the 2015 annual ESTA meeting will be held April 26-29, 2015, at the Downtown Denver Sheraton in Denver, CO. Attendees will connect with other security business owners to exchange information and best practices. Come learn what others are doing and share your experiences with them. Here's the Agenda for our meeting. For information call or text ESTA executive director Karen Mackey at 412.477.3576 or email


ESTA 2014 In Atlanta Gets Rave Reviews


The Electronic Security & Technology Association – ESTA – announced that its 2014 Annual Conference, held on April 27-30, 2014 in Atlanta, GA, received rave reviews from attendees. The four-day event featured speakers, presentations and sharing among members of the group whose mission it is to share best practices to help one another grow and compete.


The purpose of ESTA, which was formed in the 1970’s as the Alarm Dealers’ Association, is to give small-to-medium size alarm dealers a forum to network and exchange ideas without fear of competition. Each ESTA member is from an exclusive territory with no geographical overlap which allows them to share their ideas and help one another. During the sharing sessions at the 2014 Annual Meeting, each member presented what they are doing to market their companies, how they are increasing their RMR, how they are improving their business practices to operate more efficiently and what new technologies they are incorporating to differentiate themselves in the marketplace.

In the “Marketing” segment, new ESTA member, Karen Baldwin from Lake Arrowhead Security in CA, presented what her company is doing with social media and how it has improved their Internet ranking. In the “Organizational Development” session, member Bruce Kopperud, CEO of Comtronix in Casper, WY, explained how he completed a top-to-bottom transformation in the structure and culture of his company during the past year, improving efficiency by 100%. Member Tim Howell of Integrated Security in Denver, CO, shared copies of flyers that generate eight new commercial accounts per month. In the “New Business” segment, Tom Monahan, co-owner of Tech Services Security of New Jersey, presented an overview on IP video surveillance they are doing in supermarkets.

A one-day Financial Meeting was held on Sunday where members voluntarily share their annual profit and loss statements while discussing revenue, profitability and industry trends. Additional highlights of the conference included a question-and-answer session with the group’s consulting attorney, Carl Tannenbaum, of Kleinbard Bell as well as a Keynote Address by John Garber, Senior VP of the Addis Group, who spoke about the Affordable Care Act and its implications for small companies. A special presentation by Howard Deskin of Impression Marketing explained the changes in effective Internet marketing.

According to Karen Mackey, ESTA executive director, “It seems like we say this every year, but the Atlanta meeting was one of the best we’ve ever had. It fulfilled the true mission of ESTA which is ‘working together to make your business even better.'”

Attendees were enthusiastic in their praise for the conference. Art Beaver, CEO of Security Systems of America in Pittsburgh and long-time ESTA member, “found the conference very interesting and informative, as always.” Adds Beaver, “This meeting pays for itself many times over.”

In summarizing the 2014 conference, Mackey stated, “Our objective is to give members a way to network, a venue to share their best ideas and a place to get answers so they don’t feel all alone out there. Everyone is going back with plenty of new ideas to implement.”

ESTA membership is open to owners of small-to-midsize security companies who are not in an existing territory. More details about membership can be found at or by calling Karen Mackey at 412-477-3576

(Download the pdf of the above Press Release)


dApril 28 - May 1, 2013 - Annual General and Financial Meeting
Location: Hyatt Regency Riverwalk, San Antonio, TX
Contact: Karen Mackey
- Meeting Agenda (pdf)


dApril 29-May 2, 2012 - Annual General and Financial Meeting
Location: Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa on Mission Bay, San Diego, CA
Coordinator: Karen Mackey



If you were on the fence about attending ESTA 2012, this should make up your mind! Joe Clouatre ~ known as one of the security industry's best ~ will address our group on Monday, April 30, on Creative Sales and Marketing for the Electronic Security Industry. Joe has spoken at many security events including PSA,ESX, and ISC . . . and was recently voted the #1 presenter at the IAPSC conference":

"Thank you for the great presentation on Creative Sales and Marketing at our
IAPSC Conference in Savannah, GE. I wanted to let you know that, even though
we had many great presentations over the course of three days, the members selected your presentation as the #1 presentation of the conference."

Joe will tailor his presentation specifically to ESTA members and each attendee will receive a personalized copy of his new book, Creative Sales and Marketing - Delivering a Championship Performance. There is still time to register -- don't miss Joe's great presentation and one of the best ESTA meetings ever!!


ESTA Held 2011 Operations/Sales Meeting in Denver (download PDF)

The Electronic Security & Technology Association (ESTA) held its annual Operations & Sales Meeting October 26-28, 2011 in Denver, CO. Hosted by member Tim Howell, CEO of Integrated Systems of Denver, the 3-day program was attended by ESTA members from across the United States.

Day one focused on best operations practices such as effective software for scheduling, GPS vehicle tracking and project management profitability. Day two topics included billing, inventory control, training, hiring and referral systems. The meeting wrapped up on day three with discussions on equipment, new industry technology and internet marketing. All attendees agreed they came away with a number of ideas to increase the bottom line. “It’s a good check on how your company is performing,” added member Doug Wilson of Armor Security in Minneapolis, MN. “We are all facing the same situation.”

The philosophy of ESTA (not to be confused with ESA) is open sharing of financial information and successful business practices in a non-competitive environment. Members benefit from sharing ideas, mentoring and benchmarking, having access to discount purchasing programs, the ESTA ListServ and professional legal advice. Membership is open to owners of independent small-to-midsize security and technology companies, based on geographic area. For information regarding ESTA or its annual meeting scheduled for April 29-May 2, 2012 in San Diego, visit or contact executive director Karen Mackey at 412-477-3576.

ESTA Held Annual Meeting

With the French Quarter as a backdrop, the Electronic Security & Technology Association (ESTA) held its annual meeting at LePavillon Hotel in New Orleans on April 10-13, 2011. The theme for the meeting, Fire Up Your RMR, was exemplified by education sessions on revenue building, RMR best practices, and keynote speaker Peter Giacalone’s keynote address on “Three Ways to Fire up Your RMR.”

The recurring message was to gain a competitive edge through new technologies, partnerships, markets and strategies that provide an ongoing revenue stream. President Art Beaver, CEO of Security Systems of America in Pittsburgh, urged members to consider increasing RMR through acquisitions. Members Tim Howell, Integrated Systems of Denver CO, and Corey Boggs of Richmond Alarm in Virginia presented web-based and social media marketing strategies. The three-day meeting culminated with a banquet and awards ceremony.



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