Archive for Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Protection One building stability

March 21, 2006


Having curbed its losses last year, Protection One Inc. is adding employees and increasing investments to build market share for its monitored-security services.

The Lawrence-based company reported financial results Monday for its fourth quarter and full year, both of which ended Dec. 31.

The company reported total revenues of $263 million for last year, down 2.3 percent from 2004. Recurring monthly revenue was $19.9 million in December, unchanged from December 2004.

"We stabilized our recurring revenue base, which had not been done in four or five years," said Richard Ginsburg, Protection One's president and chief executive officer. "Just a few quarters ago the amount of monthly revenue we had was declining. One of our goals was to stabilize it, because, obviously, you have to stabilize it before you grow, so we're pretty pleased with '05."

The company has 70 employees at its corporate headquarters in the I-70 Business Center in North Lawrence, after adding a few marketing jobs during the fourth quarter. Overall, the company has about 2,400 employees nationwide.

At the end of last year, Protection One was carrying $344.2 million in debt, which was down from $505.5 million at the end of 2004. The company has been investing much of its available cash back into the business, Ginsburg said.

Protection One reported having $19.9 million in cash and equivalents at the end of last year, compared with $52.5 million at the end of 2004.

"We're firing on all cylinders," Ginsburg said. "Our intent is to continue to invest in the company, because we feel that the company's debt levels are very healthy. Paying down debt is really not something that we're planning on doing."

Ginsburg said the company would continue to add employees in 2005, but stopped short of saying whether Protection One would expand its physical headquarters.

"We're completely out of space, and that's a good thing," he said. "We have no plans but : to grow in Lawrence."


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